NAB issues directives to freeze 13 properties of Shehbaz Sharif, wives, sons

LAHORE: Dec 3, 2019: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Tuesday issued directives to freeze 13 properties belonging to PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif.  NAB says Shahbaz also acquired assets in the name of his two wives. The bureau has sealed thirteen properties of the PML-N president and according to the notification, Shehbaz's wife Nusrat owns a one house on an area of six kanals and another on four kanals. She has another property by the name of Nishat Lodges in Dunga Gali, Abbottabad spread over nine kanals and one marla. Among the frozen assets include three properties owned by another wife of the former Punjab chief minister, Tehmina Durrani. Located near Pir Sohawa in Haripur, cottage number 23, villa number 19 and khasra number 371. Two other properties in DHA phase 5, each built on an area of 10 marlas were also frozen by NAB. These properties were also acquired in Tehmina's name. Also NAB issued directives to seal two properties in Chiniot that were acquired under Hamza's and Salman's names. One of the properties has been built on an area of 182 kanal, seven marla and 136 square feet. The other property is built on 209 kanal, four marla and 136 square feet. The frozen assets also include nine plots of five marla each acquired in Hamza's name in Johar Town, Lahore. Among the frozen assets were also four plots belonging to Hamza.

Moody's Investors Services revises Pakistan's outlook from 'Negative' to 'Stable'

KARACHI: ICMD, Dec 2, 2019: Craedit rating agency, Moody's Investors Services, on Monday revised upwards Pakistan's outlook from 'Negative' to 'Stable'. Moody's announced bumping Pakistan's outlook rating in a report released Monday, affirming a B3 rating for the country and confirming that the economy's future look stable as opposed to negative earlier. The credit rating agency said it had positively revised the outlook in light of further improvement in Pakistan's balance of payments. Although the foreign exchange reserves were still low and that it would take time for the figure to boost, it said the policy adjustment and free floating — or flexible — exchange rate would help enhance the balance of payments. In this regard, Prime Minister Imran Khan's finance adviser, Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, said Moody's decision to bump up the country's outlook corroborates the incumbent government's success in stabilising the economy. Moody's move has laid a strong foundation for long-term growth, he added.

Fed govt ready to restore students unions subject to code of conduct; Comprehensive and enforceable conduct based best practices will be developed: PM

ISLAMABAD: ICR, Dec 1, 2o19: The federal government is ready for the restoration of students’ unions if a code of conduct is established. Prime Minister Imran Khan said in a tweet on Saturday that the universities groomed future leaders of the country and student unions formed an integral part of this grooming, Imran Khan talked about the establishment of a "comprehensive and enforceable code of conduct". He said the unions had become "violent battlegrounds and completely destroyed the intellectual atmosphere on campuses. The premier said that a "comprehensive and enforceable conduct" based on the "best practices in internationally renowned universities" will be developed so that their restoration can be made possible. Prime Minister’s statement through tweets came two days after students, activists, and supporters across Pakistan came out to join the Student Solidarity March, led by the Student Action Committee (SAC). Students across Pakistan demanded the restoration of the budget for the Higher Education Commission, end to the layoff of academics, allocation of five percent of the GDP for education, nationalization of educational institutions and withdrawal of the recent fee hike. The charter of demands includes the establishment of committees inclusive of students in all the educational institutes to investigate cases of sexual harassment.

Sindh celebrating culture day, thousands of programs arranged in all cities and towns

KARACHI: Dec 1, 2019: The people of Sindh are celebrating Sunday (today) as a cultural day and there are reports of thousands of cultural events that have been organized in various cities and towns of the province. Right from Karachi to Kashmore cultural and Social groups and also political parries have taken part in celebrations. Educational institutions and youth groups have also organized various music programs associated with Sindhi culture. The common people make traditional Sindhi outfits wearing on this day. Each and every city has its itinerary of programs for Sunday while the central program will be held at Karachi Press Club.

Shehbaz Sharif recommends to Prime Minister Imran Khan three names for post of Chief Election Commissioner

ICMD, Nov 30, 2019: Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif has recommended to Prime Minister Imran Khan three names for the post of Chief Election Commissioner. They include Nasir Mahmood Khosa, Jalil Abbas Jilani and Akhlaq Ahmad Tarar. Shehbaz has written a letter the prime minister on November 25. CEC Justice (retd) Sardar Raza’s term will expire on December 6. Also, two posts for Election Commission of Pakistan's (ECP) members are already vacant. The PML-N president, citing Article 213 of the Constitution, said that the prime minister should have started the consultation process on the new CEC “much earlier”. Shahbaz has taken the initiative" by forwarding three names to avoid any possible discontinuity in the functioning of the ECP. Meanwhile, Shehbaz, in a separate letter written to the PM on Friday, had also recommended names for the two vacant ECP seats from Balochistan and Sindh. For Sindh, Shehbaz nominated Nisar Durrani, Justice (retd) Abdul Rasul Memon and Aurangzeb Haq; and for Balochistan, he recommended the names of Supreme Court lawyer Shah Muhammad Jatoi, former advocate general of the province Muhammad Rauf Atta and Rahila Durrani. Earlier this month, the government had appointed Khalid Mehmood Siddiqui from Sindh and Munir Ahmed Kakar from Balochistan as members of the vacant seats.  However, the Islamabad High Court had suspended the presidential notification of their appointment and asked the National Assembly speaker and Senate chairman to resolve the issue by December 7.  Since then, the deadlock between the government and the opposition over the appointment has remained.

London Bridge Attacker is an ex-convict, identified as Usman Khan of Pakistani origin

LONDON: A man suspected of stabbing two people to death in a terror attack on London Bridge was a former prisoner convicted for terrorism offences and released last year, police said Saturday. Police identified the man, who was shot dead by officers after Friday's attack, as 28-year-old Usman Khan, saying they were not actively seeking any other suspects in relation to the incident. "This individual was known to authorities, having been convicted in 2012 for terrorism offences. He was released from prison in December 2018 on licence," Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said in a statement. Three more people were wounded in the daylight stabbing spree which revived memories of a three-man attack on London Bridge two years ago that killed eight. Basu said that the suspect had been living in the Staffordshire region of central England and officers were searching an address in that area. "The circumstances, as we currently understand them, are that the attacker attended an event earlier on Friday afternoon at Fishmonger's Hall called 'Learning Together'," the statement said. "We believe that the attack began inside before he left the building and proceeded onto London Bridge, where he was detained and subsequently confronted and shot by armed officers." The attacker identified as Usman Khan of Pakistani origin Metropolitan Police on Saturday identified the London Bridge attacker as British national Usman Khan, a 28-year-old male from Staffordshire. Khan was born in London and is of Pakistani ethnicity. "We are now in a position to confirm the identity of the suspect as 28-year-old Usman Khan, who had been residing in the Staffordshire area. As a result, officers are, tonight, carrying out searches at an address in Staffordshire,” Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said in a statement issued past midnight. Khan stabbed two people to death and left three injured a day earlier in an attack that caused fear and panic across the city as residents revisited the spectre of terror returning to London.