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150,000 cases pending in lower courts

F.P. Report

PESHAWAR: In the lower courts more than 1,541,000 clients are waiting for justice through out the country.

The cases pending in Punjab are about 12,00000, more than 2,00000 in KP, about 1,00000 in Sindh, 37,000 in federal capital and whereas 13,000 in Balochistan.

The facts and figures released by the district courts of the country that for the last 6 years in the country the numbers of pending cases have increased rapidly.

In the district courts of Punjab by 31 December 2011 the cases  were 11730 which have recorded a sharp increase to 1187076 cases. Likewise KPK is number two whereby 31 December 2011, 533 cases were pending and saw upward trend during the last 6 years to 204209. Whereas in Sindh the figure of 1584 rose to 99820 cases. In federal capital Islamabad this figure was 1031, rose to 37000. In Balochistan the figure was 102 rose to 13009 cases.

By 31 December 2011 in the district courts of the country 14980 cases were pending and now the figure rose to 1541109 cases.

According to figures by 1 January 2012 in the Punjab district courts the figure was 1207312 cases whereas 207541 new cases were registered.

The courts decided 239898 cases and 1175346 cases are pending. The total cases now stands at 118776.

Likewise in KPK by 1 January 2012,  204330 cases were pending and 38092 new cases were registered, 38679 cases were decided and 204095 cases are pending.

In KPK district courts a total of 204209 are pending.

In Sindh  99838 are pending, 22803 new registered and decided 24359 cases and pending are 99820 cases.

In Islamabad district courts 35112 cases are pending, 8476 new cases registered and decided 7614 cases and 37005 cases are pending.

In Balochistan district courts 13132 cases are pending, 4650 new registered, 4875 decided, the number decreased to 13009.

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CM wants issue of Jalozai Housing scheme settled

F.P. Report

PESHAWAR: Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Pervez Khattak directed for settling down the issues of Jalozai Housing scheme and Jalozai Economic Zone for expeditious facilitation of housing and industrial facilities. He directed to formalize all agreements with the investors intending to set up their ventures in the province.

He was presiding over a progress review meeting on Jalozai Housing Scheme and Jalozai Industrial Estate at Chief Minister House, Peshawar. MPA Mian Khaleeq ur Rehman, administrative secretaries of housing and industries and high ups of concerned departments attended.

The Chief Minister was briefed about the construction work, the infrastructure development and allied facilities at the site.

Chief Minister was for accelerated work on mosques, schools, hospitals, community centres, playgrounds, colleges, sanitation and drain system in the housing scheme. He directed for the construction of small dams both for recreational and water recharging purposes. He hoped that the infrastructure development in the housing scheme would be completed with the time tag and the issues resolved. He said that the infrastructure that included mosques, schools and colleges, hospitals, community centres, playgrounds, sanitation and drain would make the housing scheme more attractive and the allottees of plots would start constructing their houses immediately.

Pervez Khattak simultaneously directed to speed up the infrastructure development for the industrial purposes in the Jalozai Economic zone adding that a separate grid station by the PESCO would speed up the process of construction in the economic zone. He directed to coordinate with the relevant quarters in this regard.

Pervez Khattak also directed to initiate curative measures for the rehabilitation of Gadoon Industrial Zone. Regarding the Hattar Industrial Estate, he said that some investors had contacted him to set up their industrial units there and directed the KP EZDMC to coordinate with the potential investors. Regarding the Malaysian Halal Food Project, he directed to expedite the acquisition and award of land under the laid down procedure that he added would bring Halal economic activities in the province.

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CPDI unveils budget for Peshawar Distt

F.P. Report

PESHAWAR: The Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) has presented the first-ever citizen budget for the Peshawar district with support of the Safar Welfare Organization.

Speaking at a function, arranged on the occasion, Jamshed Tariq, Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives Project Coordinator for Khyber Pukhtunkhwa, said it was for the first time that citizen budget had been developed at the district level.

He said the citizen budget had been developed in jargon free and easy to understand format to understanding the allocations.

The Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives representative said the purpose of producing this document was to share with citizens the salient features of budget in Education, Health and Water and Sanitation sectors in the Peshawar district.

For the year 2017-2018, a total development share coming from provincial and district budget for Education sector of Peshawar district has been put at Rs704,825,000.  It is 1.2 per cent of the of total development budget.

The Health sector development has grabbed 5.7 per cent share of the total development allocation, equaling Rs 3437,534,000.

The water supply and sanitation has a share of Rs 249,306,000 which is 1.5 per cent of total development allocations for the Peshawar district.

Salman Muhammad Shoaib, Program Coordinator, Safar Welfare Organization, said through this information, citizens of district Peshawar could keep an eye on budget allocations and its subsequent spending.

“Resultantly, they would be in a better position next year to put forward own recommendations for development schemes as per their needs. This will also help promote the culture of information sharing and budget accountability,” he pointed out.

The program coordinator said the citizen budget was developed under the project “Democratic Local Governance for Development in Pakistan” which is being funded by European Union and Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom Pakistan.

The Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives is an independent, non-partisan and a not-for-profit registered civil society organization working on the issues of development and peace in Pakistan.

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Agitating woman seeks action against murderers of her daughter

F.P Report

PESHAWAR: A female along with her children on Saturday protested against murderers of her 24-years old daughter and asked Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government and police department to take stringent action against police personnel involved in this case.

A female resident of Tanda Kohi Sar Geet Peshawar, staged a protest demonstration in front of Peshawar press club. The affected family members chanted slogans against police personnel and killers of deceased lady.

Aggrieved female informed that her daughter Naila Bibi had been married Faizan Abbas of Basti Sher Khan area of Haripur district. The husband of Naila Bibi was trying to make another wedding but his wife was not letting him to do so, she stated.

The alleged Faizan Abbas also tortured his wife when she ruled out allowing him to do another marriage, she added. While Faizan Abbas later called me that Naila Bibi has died and  then I went to Haripur district to receive the dead of my daughter but those people also tortured me and fractured my hand as well.

After these all happenings, then I moved towards nearby police station where alleged police officials did not lodge First Information Report (FIR) against accused persons and registered a temporary Roznamcha. She revealed that the alleged murderers belong of Abbasi family which has a stronghold in Haripur district and that police personnel were reluctant to lodge FIR against them.

She alleged that police men even did not deliver them the postmortem report of deceased female despite visiting police station several times.

The annoyed female asked chief minister Khyber Pakhtukhwa and inspector general police to help apprehending murderers of her 24-years old daughter and give unprecedented punishment to police men for their alleged involvement in the case.

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Philip Morris (Pakistan) sets new tobacco export record in 2017

F.P. Report

PESHAWAR: Philip Morris (Pakistan) Limited (PMPKL) has set a new record for Pakistan’s tobacco sector by exporting around 7.3 million kilograms of tobacco in 2017, an increase of more than 400% versus the previous year, made possible by focusing on sustainable tobacco production and cost competitiveness, said an official statement.

In 2017, PMPKL accounted for more than 80 per cent of Pakistan’s overall tobacco export volume of 8.7 million kilograms. Tobacco export destinations included Asia, Europe and Africa this year.

According to Pakistan Tobacco Board figures, growth in Philip Morris exports significantly outpaced the overall growth of exports across the tobacco industry. In 2016, the Ministry of Commerce recognized Philip Morris (Pakistan) with the Best Exporter award and gave recognition of its impressive tobacco exports performance and role in improving Pakistan’s economy.

Philip Morris tobacco exports contributed an estimated USD 18 million to Pakistan’s foreign currency export earnings, helping to mitigate a wider national trade deficit of around USD 12 billion during July-October, 2017, according to the data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). The tobacco crop offers enormous potential for exports but there is a dire need to overcome structural and policy issues prevalent in the sector.

The significant increase in tobacco exports by PMPKL follows persistent efforts by the company over past few years to improve crop quality and promote Sustainable Tobacco Production (STP) in Pakistan.

PMPKL’s STP program applies an integrated approach to supporting farmers through provision of imported hybrid seed for higher and better quality yield, curing barn upgrades, balanced fertilizers and farm mechanization. The STP program also encourages limiting the use of recommended chemical pesticides and reducing consumption of fuel wood to increase farmers’ profitability, while at the same time contributing to environmental goals through reforestation and lower carbon emissions.

“These results demonstrate our strong commitment to contributing to Pakistan’s economy and making a positive impact in the country overall”, said Alexander Reisch, Managing Director of PMPKL. He continued: “We will continue to work with Pakistan’s valued tobacco farmers to implement the Sustainable Tobacco Production (STP) program, and facilitate crop buying process through our recently established mega buying station. Our goal is to support sustainable farming, create better livelihood opportunities and fight child labor on tobacco farms.”

Appreciating PMPKL’s efforts in boosting tobacco exports from Pakistan, Chairman PTB, Syed Sohail Altaf, said that “this historic achievement highlights the focus of Philip Morris (Pakistan) on maintaining quality and price competitiveness for increased exports.” He added, “PTB will continue to collaborate with all stakeholders for welfare of tobacco growing community and to strengthen Pakistan’s economy through higher tobacco exports in coming years.”

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We are ready for South Africa, says Virat Kohli

Monitoring Desk

CAPE TOWN: Indian captain Virat Kohli said on Saturday that his Indian team had the ability to gain a first series win in South Africa. “We have the right kind of bowling attack and the right kind of balance to win Test matches in any conditions we play in,” he said at the Indian team’s arrival press conference.

The first of the three Test matches starts at Newlands on Friday. Kohli baulked, though, when it was suggested his team had a chance to make history. “For us it is about winning sessions, being in the present, executing our skills well, not looking at the history of a particular country we are playing in.”

With 13 of his 17-man squad veterans of India’s 2013/14 tour, Kohli said there was plenty of experience. “A lot of our players have played here before. But it’s about the number of games we had played then and the number we have played now,” said Kohli. “We all understand our own games so much better. As a team we have confidence in our personal skills set.”

Kohli said team spirit was the outstanding feature of the touring party. “There’s a sense of intelligence and awareness and that provides the excitement. We know exactly what we need to do come game time. We know how to win Test matches.” Kohli said India had made the right decision to cancel a scheduled two-day warm-up match, opting instead for intensive middle-wicket practice at a local club.

“There’s no point in wasting two days, guys going in and scoring quick fifties,” said Kohli. “We’d rather have them do two sessions like today. We can try and prepare the wickets the way we want them. If you are playing a game there is no room to change the wicket. Here you have the freedom to put more water on the wicket, roll it and make it harder so that tomorrow we have the conditions we want.”

Kohli said his players expected to be challenged by South Africa’s fast bowlers on pitches with pace and bounce but they were confident in their own ability. “Come the fifth of January we will be ready for it,” he said. Coach Ravi Shastri said: “This team is up for the challenge. If you had asked me four years ago I would have said no. But this team has gained in experience. The beauty of this team is that it doesn’t matter which opposition. We look at the pitch and adapt to the conditions. Every game is a home game. It’s as simple as that.”

Shastri added: “This will be a contest. I can sense our players want this Test match to start as soon as possible.”

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Buttler, spinners lead Thunder’s rout of Hurricanes

Monitoring Desk

LAUNCESTON: An electric innings from Jos Buttler and some sublime spin bowling from Fawad Ahmed, Arjun Nair and Chris Green saw Sydney Thunder destroy Hobart Hurricanes in Launceston. Buttler smashed four sixes and five fours in his innings of 67 from 41 balls to set up a solid total at University of Tasmania Stadium, a ground not previously used in men’s BBL cricket.

Then the spinners bamboozled the Hurricanes top order to secure the Thunder’s second win of the tournament. The Hurricanes have remained winless but the schedule has done them no favours. They looked rusty after nine days between games and the Hurricanes and the Stars will be the only two teams to have played only two matches prior to the New Year. Buttler has an excellent T20 record. In 206 career matches, he averages 28.11 and strikes at 143.45 playing in a variety of roles for a number of different teams across both international and domestic cricket. But his last 12 T20s in the Bangladesh Premier League and the BBL have been extremely lean. He has averaged 9.5, striking at 110.69 with a highest score of 26.

He delivered in spades in Launceston. A boundary in the first over settled him, then Kurtis Patterson’s hat-trick of boundaries in the second over allowed Buttler more time to adjust to a surface he had not previously seen before. After Patterson fell, Buttler and Shane Watson only scored at seven an over until the end of the 11th over. Then Buttler exploded, targeting debutant Thomas Rogers. He struck four sixes in an over. The second travelled 108 metres. The third came from a no-ball that was called for an above head-high bouncer. The ensuing free hit was hammered 110 metres onto the roof of the stand at midwicket. The run-rate had vaulted above nine an over by the end of the 13th before Buttler gave away his stumps to Clive Rose in the 14th and was bowled.

Watson kept rolling, striking two boundaries in the 15th over but the innings fell flat following a bizarre run-out. Watson and Callum Ferguson aren’t the nimblest between the wickets as both have a history of injury issues. Watson assumed a second run was on after Ferguson worked a ball into the leg- side but Ferguson didn’t run. Watson was left stranded, later admitting he didn’t hear the call of “no”. Rose, Jofra Archer and Tymal Mills bowled superbly to concede just 27 in the last four overs. They gave up just one boundary and it was when Archer parried a simple catch at long-on over the rope for six after Mills had forced a miscue from Ryan Gibson.

D’Arcy Short and Alex Doolan have produced three consecutive 50-run opening partnerships, including the two warm-up games and round one of the BBL. They looked on again when Short struck two fours and a six to three different parts of the ground in the second over of the innings from Gurinder Sandhu. The rate was slowed by wickets. Mitchell McClenaghan bowled Short through the gate and Ben McDermott also played a shot he would regret.

He produced a wild slog off Sandhu with the score at 1 for 35 after 4.1. The top-edge was well caught by Buttler running back towards third man. George Bailey joined Doolan and the pair kept the required rate under nine through seven overs.

The Hurricanes lost 5 for 34 in the next eight overs of spin. Fawad and Nair took a wicket each in the eighth, ninth, 10th and 11th overs respectively to kill off the game. Ahmed, Nair and Chris Green delivered 22 dot balls in 48 deliveries and conceded just one boundary in total. Jofra Archer hit Green over long-on for six second ball having strangely walked out at No. 9.

The Hurricanes decided to promote Cameron Boyce to No. 6, and bat Rose in front of Archer at No.8. Boyce averages 8.41 in T20 cricket at a strike rate of 104.12 with a highest score of 24 not out. Rose’s numbers are better (16.75 and 131.37) but they are not as good as Archer’s, who averages 18.87 and strikes at 143.80. Even the basic eye-test, frowned upon in sabermetrics, would reveal he is a far better batsman than Boyce and Rose. He proved it with an impressive, but ultimately fruitless, 25 not out from 16 balls as the Thunder cleaned up the tail.

 

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BOP, Nestlé sing MoU to productivity of dairy farmers

F.P. Report

LAHORE: The Bank of Punjab (BOP) and Nestlé Pakistan have signed a MoU enabling the two partners to collaborate on improving the productivity of Pakistani dairy farmers by way of providing them with financial assistance.

With this arrangement, the BOP shall provide financing to Nestlé dairy farmers for the purchase of animals, dairy machinery and equipment, farm infrastructure and to meet their working capital needs at the most competitive rates with ease.

With a network of over 500 branches, the BOP has achieved its objective of financial inclusion through its presence in the country’s remotest areas through smart branches.

The newly opened smart branches are connected online and offer state-of-the-art modern banking services.

The commitment of the BOP towards the promotion of the agricultural sector (particularly the dairy industry), is endorsed by entering into this partnership with Nestlé Pakistan – a leader in the country’s dairy sector – and will hopefully go a long way in providing synergy to this sector.

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Business community hails UBG historic victory in FPCCI elections

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Business fraternity across the country Saturday felicitated the United Business Group (UBG) for sweeping of all FPCCI seats with a thumping majority which clearly reflects their confidence in judicious policies being followed by the group leadership.

According to press statement issued by UBG here, the business leaders urged the United Business Group to evolve a roadmap for year 2018 and ensure its implementation in true spirit.

They said that outgoing FPCCI body under the leadership of UBG had made the federation corruption-free and hoped that new body would follow their footmarks.

While felicitating for victory in FPCCI elections for year 2018, they urged UBG leaders to keep core committees on as it would help them to consult and get feedback from top to bottom.

UBG strong candidates made a clean sweep in the annual elections of the federation defeating the all candidates of his rivals groups Pakistan Businessman Panel and Pakistan Business Group fourth time consecutively.

UBG Presidential candidate Ghazanfar Bilour,SVP Syed Mazhar Ali Nasir,VPs Kareem Aziz Malik,Sh Atif Akram,Ch Arfan Yousaf,Shabnum Zafar,Syeda Saeeda Bano,Muhammad Shafeeq Anjum,Ch Javed Iqbal,Zahid Saeed,Tariq Saleem and Waheed Ahmad defeated their rivals.

UBG Central Chairman Iftikahr Ali Malik, patron-in-chief SM Muneer, FPCCI President Zubair Tufail,UBG Sind Chairman Khalid Tawab,UBG provincial chairman Punjab Muhammad Adrees.UBG head of FATA and Islamabad Rauf Alam and other trade leaders thanked the voters and supporters for reposing trust on the UBG prudent policies and they vowed to continue its 30 agenda mainly aimed at the accelerating the pace of economic development besides addressing the problems being confronted by business community across the country.

While talking to media after thumping victory in FPCCI election, UBG Chairman Iftikhar Ali Malik said that the result of election indicates confidence of business community in the UBG policies.

He said, “We firmly believe in rule of law, promotion of democratic system and strengthening of national economy by safeguarding the interests of traders.”

On the occasion, SM Munir hailed the business community for reposing confidence in UBG in the larger interests of the economy of the country while newly elected president Ghazanfar Bilour said that he would try best to serve the interests of business community.

Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) Chief Mian Kashif Ashfaq Ghazanfar Bilour also congratulated SM Munir, Iftikhar Ali Malik and newly elected FPCCI President for landslide victory in the elections of FPCCI through a democratic process for the year 2018.

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Pakistan stock market’s bumpy ride in 2017

F.P. Report

KARACHI: Pakistan Stock Exchange once a shinning star, now huddled by political and economic events. Index lost 15.4% in 2017.

Pakistan Stock Exchange which was one the best performing markets in the global arena in 2016 portrayed a different picture in 2017 and the ride was quite bumpy and benchmark 100 index during whole year plunged by 15.4 percent.

The journey of the stock market was quite healthy and steady growth was witnessed till hit the all-time high mark of 52876 points on May 24th 2017 where the market capitalization also crossed the coveted level of Rs 10 trillion, reaching nearly Rs 10.446 trillion.

But the bulls got exhausted as they received heavy beating from bears and investors’ confidence battered badly which was cemented owing to number of factors which chopped the share values sharply.

Largely the confidence of investors measures after the announcement of the budget where series of new taxes were imposed on the brokers community especially change in the schedule of tax on capital gains. Moreover, government kept gulf between the investors community and brokers which also created crater in the confidence.

However, the major upset arrived from the disinterest of the foreign investors in the stock market as against expectation arrival of funds from international institutions diminished sharply despite entry of Pakistan Stock Market into the MSCI emerging market index. The bourse got upgraded but it failed to attract investors rather on yearly basis the net outflow from the overseas investors amounted to nearly 500 million dollars which was high as compared with last year selling of 345 million dollars.

Steam of selling was continued unabated rather accelerate as the acceptance of the apex court from NAB to starting hearing on JIT against former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was the tremor and the stock market for the first time on daily basis plunged by 2153 points on July 11.

The removal of former prime minister and finance minister got approval to go for sick leave were enough for the market and index following these happening still unsettled and index during the year hit below 38000 mark also. But formation of the new team by the current Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abassi saddling Miftah Islmail and Rana Afzal Khan in the ministry of finance gave positive signals.

However, much has to be done as time is short because now only five months left for new election. Major steps are required to bolster the confidence of the investors, however major issue for the analysts has been the economic numbers which cast dark shadow as country would be requiring nearly 6 billion dollars to be paid as external debt and principal payment. Dependence on financial institutions have increased and government would require some out box solution to meet the challenges on the economic front.

The stock market started the journey from 47806 points, reached to all time high of 52876 points on May 24, however closed at 40463 points on Dec. 29, 2017. On yearly basis the index lost 15.4 percent and from its peak it showed a decline of 23.4 percent.