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Why Outages Still Occur After 5 Yrs, Billions On New Plants & $900M on Transmission Lines

JUN 17, 2018 (BE2C2 Report – updated): Nearly $900 million (Rs94 billion) has been spent over the past five years to complete transmission line projects in an attempt to improve the poor transmission and distribution network that could not bear all electricity load including additional load created by power generation projects completed in all four provinces on fast-track basis. Most of these power plants were constructed out of the $34 billion to $36 billion loans built into the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor package as “early harvest projects”, to reduce impact ofRead More


UPDATE: Asghar Khan Case Verdict On 1990 Polls Rigging: GHQ Willing to Prosecute Named Officers

JUN 13, 2018 — The defense ministry has expressed willingness to prosecute several former army officers for distributing millions of rupees to anti-PPP politicians in the general elections of 1990. The political engineering had led to PML-N Supremo Mian Nawaz Sharif’s obtaining his first victory toward getting elected as the country’s Prime Minister. The military officers at that time who were involved in the manipulation were former army chief General (retd) Mirza Aslam Beg, former Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief Lieutenant General (retd) Asad Durrani, Brig (retd) Hameed Saeed Akhtar, andRead More


Defense, Foreign Minister Dastgir’s Talking Points On Last Day in Office

Jun 1, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Defense and Foreign minister Khurram Dastgir on the last day (Thursday) of the civilian setup, briefed newsmen along with Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal about foreign policy achievements of the PML-N-led government in Islamabad. Briefly, he highlighted  the following major developments, progress, and Islamabad’s key foreign policy group think going forward: — Relationship with China is the top most priority of the country’s foreign policy. — Pakistan entered into strategic partnership with China and launched the historic CPEC project. — Pakistan tackled challenges throughRead More


Pakistan-India Water Dispute: World Bank Seeks Amicable Solution

May 24, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — The World Bank is holding talks with a Pakistani delegation in the US capital for an amicable resolution of its water dispute with India by seeking opportunities and alternative approaches within the Indus Water Treaty framework. A four-member Pakistani delegation, headed by Attorney General Ashtar Ausaf Ali, arrived in Washington on Sunday, a day after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated a 330MW dam in India-held Kashmir, which Pakistan fears will reduce its share in the waters of the Indus and its tributaries. The riverRead More


Need For Local Expertise, Skills Development To Maximize CPEC

HASAAN KHAWAR: Over the last few months, I have been asked one question repeatedly at multiple forums. What kind of skills should Pakistan invest in to prepare its workforce for CPEC-related projects? While I have not come across any detailed research on the subject, although based on available information it is possible to draw some broad conclusions. The upcoming job opportunities and skills demand can be broadly categorised into three major areas. First comes the infrastructure-related jobs created by China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) investments in roads, energy projects, GwadarRead More


Three-Month Summer Art Camp For Children To Start In Islamabad From June 26

May 22, 2019 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — A three-month long summer art camp for children would be held at Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) in the capital Islamabad from June 26 to August 9. Summer art camps are a regular feature of PNCA’s programs arranged to facilitate art lovers, students and amateur artists for boosting their extracurricular skills besides their regular studies. PNCA is the custodian of over one thousand works of art by leading Pakistani artists. The institution was setup to spearhead the development of arts in the country. DuringRead More


Maulana Fazlur Rehman Parts Ways With Ruling Party PML-N Over FATA-KP Merger Issue

May 19, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Maulana Fazlur Rehman on Sunday announced that his party JUI-F had decided to part ways with the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) over the implementation of reforms in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) straddling Afghanistan’s eastern border. Strongly opposing the 13th Amendment Bill, Rehman termed the reforms a global conspiracy. The JUI-F chief claimed that the government had backed off from the promise it made with their party for not going ahead with the merger; not going ahead with Rewaj Act and not announcing theRead More


Nepal Army Chief Calls on Gen. Bajwa, Discuss Regional Security Situation

Earlier in March, Prime Minister Khakan Abbasi paid a rare two-day visit to Khatmandu May 16, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Nepal’s Army Chief, Gen Rajendra Chhetri called on Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa at GHQ in Rawalpindi on Wednesday. According to Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR), during the meeting matters of mutual interest including military to military relations, regional security situation and measures to improve bilateral relations were discussed. The visiting dignitary acknowledged and appreciated Pakistan Army’s sincere efforts and sacrifices in war against terrorism and forRead More


2nd Book On Sikh Legacy in Pakistan Launched in Chicago

May 16, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — A book that tracks Sikhism’s cultural footprint in Pakistan was launched in Chicago at a ceremony at which Pakistani Consul General Faisal Niaz Tirmizi was the chief guest. Authored by Amardeep Singh, a Singapore national, the book “The Quest Continues: Lost Heritages The Sikh Legacy in Pakistan” also underlines the fact that peaceful co-existence enriches lives. This is Amardeep Singh’s second book about Sikh Legacy in Pakistan after he wrote Lost Heritage “ The Sikh Legacy in Pakistan, which was launched in June 2016 inRead More


Democracy As A Behavior Rather Than Politics Only

“The one who are more marginalized were presenting themselves more explicitly and the one who were not facing any identity threat were least participating.” MARIAM HASSAN NAQVI — In the midst of woods where two weathers were colliding to conquer the heat of summers, over the coldness of January but at the end winters won the race. While embracing the surprise visit of snowfall in the heated month of April, I thought about the fools of our history. The whole retreat by National Assembly of Pakistan in collaboration with PakistanRead More


8 Bottled Water Brands Found Unsafe For Drinking, 4 Makeshift Plants Shut Down in Karachi

Rising concerns about quality of the tap water is driving demand for bottled water in the country; The threat from counterfeit and unbranded bottled water continues. May 9, 2018 (BE2C2) — The Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR) on Tuesday declared eight brands of bottled water unsafe for drinking due to chemical and microbiological contamination. The unsafe bottled water brands are Aqua Fine, Pure Aqua, Livon, Zam, Aqua Gold, Pure 18, Aab-e-Noor and Edlen Premium. According to the monitoring report for first quarter of the year (Jan toRead More


Quetta Coalmine Explosion: 16 Killed, 9 Injured, More Than a Dozen Trapped

May 5, 2018 (BE2C2) — A coalmine explosion on Saturday killed at least 16 labors and injured several others in Quetta, with over a dozen still trapped, officials said. Sixteen miners were killed and nine others were wounded when a coal mine collapsed due after methane gas triggered underground blast. The accident occurred in Marwaarh, 45 kilometers (28 miles) east of Quetta, which is the capital of oil and gas-rich Balochistan province bordering Iran and Afghanistan. “The roof caved in following an explosion triggered by the accumulation of methane gas,Read More


OIC Contact Group on Kashmir Holds Emergency Meeting in Jeddah

Kashmir Women Movement (UK & Europe) launched in London to highlight at international level gross human rights violations by Indian forces in the occupied Himalayan valley. May 2, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — The OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir held an emergency meeting in Jeddah on 30th April. The meeting was called in the context of recent killings of 20 innocent Kashmiri civilians at the hands of Indian occupation forces. Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary, Tehmina Janjua, led Pakistan delegation to the meeting which was chaired by Ambassador Abdullah Al Alim, theRead More


Sindh’s Nawabshah Endures Hottest April Temperature Ever Observed On Earth

** Heatstroke caused dozens of people to faint as Nawabshah (Shaheed Benazirabad) district and Larkana sizzled at 50.2 and 49 degrees Celsius, respectively, on Monday. ** As concentrations of heat-trapping gases continue to build in the atmosphere due to human activity, the expectation is for an increase in the intensity, frequency and duration of hot weather, say climate change gurus. May 2, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — On Monday, the city of Nawabshah in southern province of Sindh, soared to 122.4 degrees Fahrenheit (50.2 Celsius). This might just be the highest temperatureRead More


The Longest Straight-Line Sea Journey Without Hitting Land Begins in Balochistan

Computer scientists have found the longest straight line you could sail without hitting land. While they were at it, they found the longest straight path you could drive without hitting water. April 30, 2018 (BE2C2) — Back in 2012, a curious debate emerged on the discussion website Reddit, specifically on a subreddit called /r/MapPorn. Here the user Kepleronlyknows posted a map of the world purporting to show the longest navigable straight-line path over water without hitting land. The route began in Pakistan– few hundred miles west of the country’s portRead More


Saim Ayub’s 161 Helps Pakistan Under-16 Win T20 Against Australia

Saim Ayub struck an unbeaten 161 not out as Pak-U16 beat Aus-U16 by 3 wickets chasing 258nruns. Australia won the series by 3-2. April 28, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Pakistan won the last T20 match by seven wickets on Friday. In the last one-day match on Thursday, Pakistan had overpowered Australia by two wickets. In the one-off Twenty20, which followed five one-day matches, Pakistan scored a seven-wicket win with 16 balls to spare. Saim Ayub’s  161 not out and 56 helped Pakistan win the match against Australia in Melbourne. Australia lostRead More


Russia Keen to Expand Military Ties with Pakistan, Top Military Official Tells Gen Bajwa

“Pakistan would continue to play its part to keep conflicts away from the region and seek approaches which bring regional convergences into play rather than divergences” April 24, 2018 — Russia’s military chief says Pakistan was geostrategically an important country and Moscow is keen to expand its existing military-to-military cooperation– a significant development at a time when Islamabad’s relationship with Washington continues to deteriorate. In a meeting with Pakistan army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa who reached Moscow on an official visit Tuesday, the Russian General acknowledged Pakistan’s achievement inRead More


Pakistan Daal Consumption Declines Sharply, Meat Consumption Rises

By RIAZ HAQ: Pakistan’s per capita daal (pulse, lintel) consumption has sharply declined to about 7 kg/person from about 15 Kg/person in 2000, according to data released by Food and Agriculture Organization and reported in Pakistani media. Meat has replaced Daal as the main source of protein with per capita meat consumption rising from 11.7 kg in 2000 to 32 kg in 2016. It is projected to rise to 47 kg by 2020, according to a paper published in the Korean Journal of Food Science of Animal Resources. Rising Incomes:Read More


China, Russia Replacing U.S. as Pakistan’s Major Arms Suppliers

KEY POINTS: US Arms Deliveries to India Has Grown by 557 Percent During the Period 2008 and 2017; A Chinese defense analyst says there is no military alliance between China and Pakistan, but “China’s arms exports to Pakistan are a powerful weapon to safeguard the South Asian country’s military sovereignty.”. (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — As the Trump administration targets Pakistan, the country is gradually reducing its dependence on American military technology and China is filling the gap, says a Financial Times report, which also warns that this shift will have geopolitical repercussions.Read More


In Pakistan, Social Media Usage is Male Dominated, Females Lag Behind (Infographics)

Socializing isn’t all that Pakistanis do online. They are using digital technologies to make money and contribute to the country’s foreign reserves. An April 2017 report noted that online freelancing in Pakistan has grown to $1 billion. (BE2C2) — The latest digital ecosystem report by ‘We Are Social and ‘Hootsuite’ reveals some fascinating insights about Pakistan’s internet usage statistics, financial inclusion, annual digital growth, and key indicators like active social media users, gender usages gaps, etc. According to the report, the active number of Facebook users in the country stoodRead More