Pak Urdu

Pak Urdu Media Digest, Feb 9, 2023

14 Min
Pak Urdu Media Digest, Feb 9, 2023


  • The Public Accounts Committee has sought details of steps taken to stop smuggling of American greenbacks into Afghanistan from Pakistan.  It also directed strict action against Afghan citizens who raised anti-Pakistan slogans. Similarly, PAC dollars from Pak-Afghan border. (Jasarat)
  • Severe shortage of drugs for heart diseases, diabetes and cancer persists across the country. Medical store owners say that medicines are not being supplied by pharmaceutical companies. But pharma companies contend that input shortage has hit their production line. (Jang)
  • The alleged mastermind of Rawalpindi car bombing and outlawed TTP commander Irfanullah was killed while his 3 accomplices escaped in an exchange of fire between CTD and terrorists in Khanewal. The terrorists were planning a major attack. (Jang)
  • During a drive against hoarders in Punjab’s Kasur district, the police have recovered oil and diesel worth 33 crore rupees. Police teams also seized more than a dozen oil tankers. Police recovered 1.3 lakh liters of oil and diesel from two depots in Sadar Patuki and Sadar Pholangar areas. Both depots are sealed. (Daily Express, Nawaiwaqt)
  • IMF set a condition for discounting the primary budget deficit, the discount has been made subject to proof of expenditure. The government says that the primary budget deficit can reach 1100 billion rupees due to flood-related expenses. The IMF is ready to grant an exemption of 475 billion rupees in the primary budget deficit, but for this, the government must provide the IMF with proof of the expenses incurred in the flood-affected areas. (Nawaiwaqt, Ummat)
  • Balochistan Chief Minister Abdul Quddus Bizenjo said that if the media does not promote terrorists by showing responsibility, there will be a 70% reduction in terrorism.  Talking to journalists in Quetta, he said terrorism is done to make news headlines. (Daily Express, Daily Jinnah)
  • The person, who had kidnapped, raped and killed a young girl in Qaidabad area of Karachi was arrested from Mansehra area of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The gruesome incident took place on the 18th of November last year, according to SSP Investigation Malir Arab Maher.   (Daily Express, Ummat)
  • In a letter to the Interior Ministry, the army headquarters, GHQ, has expressed inability to provide forces for poll duty. GHQ also stated that the security personnel would be engaged in providing security cover to the digital census from 27th February to 3rd April due to the threat of terrorism. (Ummat, Daily Express, Nawaiwaqt, Daily Jinnah)
  • The Anti-Narcotics Force seized 254 kg of ketamine hidden in grease drums during an operation in Korangi, Karachi. The op was carried out on a tip-off, ANF spokesman said. In two other operations, 136 kg of hashish was seized from the distant hilly area of Pishin Yaro, while 200 kg of hashish was recovered from a house under construction near Turbi. (Ummat)
  • Punjab Police Chief Usman Anwar has ordered a crackdown on petrol hoarders. He warned that strict action would be taken against those creating a false shortage of petrol. People are finding it hard to get petrol in many parts of Punjab because the petrol pump owners have limited the sale in hope that the prices will rise soon.   (Islam Daily)
  • PML-N leader, Sardar Mehtab Abbasi has resigned from the party. Speaking to a TV Channel he claimed that he had tried to convey his objections to the leadership but ‘no body listened to me’.  He added that the situation is so bad that “we can’t defend the stand of the party in public”. He said that the provincial leadership is in the hands of people who are not connected with the ideology of the party. The existence of the party is in danger in Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. “Our party is confined to Punjab only. Only 4 or 5 people are taking all the decisions”.  He said that the decision of the PDM to bring a no-confidence motion against Imran Khan was a grave mistake.  (Intekhab Daily)
  • The Chief of Jamaat e Islami Sirajul Haq said that in Pakistan flour is costly but death is cheap. He said that the bomb blast in the Peshawar police lines mosque is the biggest tragedy after the Peshawar Army School tragedy. Addressing the Aman March in Peshawar, he said the country is burning, and people are dying but the government is unconcerned. The country is being destroyed by a well-planned conspiracy but the politicians are worried about election. Some powers want to divide this country in the name of language, community, and religion but the government and establishment are silent on this issue.     (Intekhab Daily)
  • Prices of medicines have gone up by 100 percent in Balochistan but even at this exorbitant rate they are not available. The black-market sells the medicines at 300 percent of their mark up prices.   (Intekhab Daily)
  • Deputy Amir of Jamaat-e-Islami (Balochistan chapter) Maulana Abdul Kabir Shakir has said taking away the rights of the people of Gwadar is illegal and unjust. He also blamed the federal government for the continued deprivations of Baluchistan. He added that gas, water and electricity shortage has become acute in Quetta. (Urdu Point)
  • Zulfiqar Ali Tariq Qadri, the leader of Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat, has stated that the country is suffering from economic instability. The smuggling of millions of dollars to Afghanistan every day is a matter of concern. The smuggling puts a question mark on the performance of the security agencies. (Urdu Point)
  • Levies Force have recovered 52 rounds of 12.7 anti-aircraft guns and 3 RPG 7 rockets hidden near the Pak-Afghan border in Mehrab Wadh area during a search operation. No arrest was made so far. (Urdu Point)
  • In the wake of Peshawar Police Lines Mosque  blast, the Federal Government has decided to investigate as to how the special fund of 417 billion rupees given to the former FATA to beef up security was utilised in the last 10 years. (Urdu Point)
  • Illegal mining of minerals is going on in Nowshera CPEC city and adjacent areas, though the Peshawar High Court has imposed a blanket ban on mining in the area. A company, identified as Colonel Construction is mining in a 100-acre area. It is invoking the name of military organizations to ward off pressure from local administration. (Urdu Point, Daily Pakistan)


  • Economists sitting in the current and previous governments were under the assumption that Pakistan would convince the IMF to extend the loan repayment period and to give us concessions but the IMF officials refused to give concessions despite the Corona epidemic and the global economic crisis. The news that has come out during this period clearly shows that the officials of the Ministry of Finance are forced to listen to the IMF orders instead of negotiating with the IMF team. (Edit Jasarat)
  • According to a Bloomberg report, millions of dollars are being smuggled from Pakistan to Afghanistan every day. Because of this illegal transfer of dollars, the Taliban are able to survived the sanctions imposed by the West after the American troop withdrawal in 2021. According to the General Secretary of the Exchange Companies Association of Pakistan, traders and smugglers are taking about five million dollars across the border every day; this amount is more than the amount of $17 million that the central bank of Afghanistan releases every week. (Edits- Jang, Nawaiwaqt)
  • Political and economic crises are impacting peoples’ lives in varied ways, most notably in the forms of rising inflation, robberies and street crime. Sindh people are not spared from these curses. It is the government’s responsibility to not only provide people with roti, kapda and makaan but also to see that tall claim of “none is above law” are put into practice too in the true sense of the word. Our society cannot make any progress without the rule of law. The provincial governments cannot keep themselves away from their duty of ensuring rule of law on any pretext including political turmoil. The ruling sections are at their high places with taxpayers’ money and they cannot look other way. (Pahenji, Edit, Feb.8)   
  • New taxes on account of IMF conditions will only add to the burden on the common man in the form of more inflation. Rulers have now excused themselves from leaving the nation and people to Almighty’s mercy. The ruling elite will do well to realize that peoples’ sufferings are on account of their follies, and as such it is their responsibility to set things right. Rulers should remember that they cannot escape backslash from people. Instead of making tall promises, they should stand by people and get them relief. (Kawish, Edit, Feb.8)  
  • Whosoever is behind petrol hoarding, action must be taken against the hoarders.   Government must ensure availability of petrol and should do something concrete instead of making big statements. Petrol shortage will either bring life to standstill or it will shoot up inflation. (Sindh Exp, Edit)  
  • The Human Rights Watch in one of its statements has said the IMF should work with the government of Pakistan for the protecting economically backward section of the society.    The global watch dog also said that the IMF and the Pakistan government must see that the lives of this low-income group are not endangered. This statement is issued at a time when the talks between the IMF and Pakistan are at a decisive stage. The IMF is imposing such hard conditions that will badly upset the lives of low-income people. The IMF has to show sympathy for the down-trodden on humanitarian grounds. (Edit-Dunya Daily) 


  • General Pervez Musharraf, who violated the constitution of Pakistan twice, could not spend his last days in Pakistan. His burial with high military honors in Karachi on February 7, gives us an opportunity to think and understand a lot. The first lesson is that the general always stands with the general, even if the court has declared him a traitor. A politician often does not stand with a politician and that is why the army is considered a stronger institution than the parliament in Pakistan. When a special court sentenced Musharraf to death for treason in 2019, Imran Khan was the Prime Minister and General Qamar Javed Bajwa was the Army Chief. That day was a day of intense pressure on Pakistan’s media. Imran Khan’s cabinet ministers held a press conference and used very derogatory words against Judge Waqar Seth who sentenced Musharraf and rejected the sentence. The same Musharraf who imposed emergency in 2007 and imprisoned the judges of the Supreme Court and the High Court in their homes, got relief from the judiciary of Pakistan. Neither parliament nor the judiciary stood behind the judge who sentenced Musharraf for violating the constitution. The participation of the leadership of MQM in Musharraf’s burial is understandable because this party was involved in the Musharraf regime for a long time. The participation of many other leaders including Fawad Chaudhary and Imran Ismail of Tehreek-e-Insaf in this burial is noteworthy. I cannot forget the day of 12 May 2007. On that day, MQM members in Karachi were shooting those who came out on the streets against the Musharraf government. And Imran Khan was sitting in front of me in the live transmission of Geo News in Islamabad and called Musharraf a terrorist. On that day, Imran Khan gained a lot of popularity through Geo, but the price of this popularity I paid along with the Geo in the form of restrictions. Some ignorant are calling today, Musharraf, the founder of independent media. It is a stupid claim. During the Musharraf era, many journalists, including me, were banned. It was the time when Hayatullah Khan, a journalist from North Waziristan, was kidnapped and killed for exposing the American drone attacks. In the same period of oppression, a journalist, Shakeel Turabi’s children were killed in their school to put pressure on him. And when I protested, cruel people followed my children to their school. I refrained from speaking bitterly about Musharraf after his demise, but he is a part of our history and the ‘garmagarmi’ (heated argument) in the Upper House of Parliament. General Bajwa made the sentence given to Musharraf ineffective with his “favors”, but, he couldn’t end the hatred that was spread because of the murder of Akbar Bugti and Benazir Bhutto. I had no personal enmity with Musharraf, I was among the few journalists whom he briefed on the Kargil operation in January 1999 and vowed to liberate Kashmir in just three days. Later, this Kargil operation led to the labeling of the Kashmir Liberation Movement as terrorism and to the military coup of 12 October 1999. My disagreement (with Musharraf) started when I opposed the death penalty to Nawaz Sharif in the hijacking case. Nawab Akbar Bugti was still alive and I was tried to be made part of the live coverage plan of the operation against him. After the refusal, I had to go abroad for a few days to avoid serious consequences. A close associate of Musharraf who is now in Tehreek-e-Insaaf told me that he had ordered to buy some journalists and I was among them. I don’t know about others but I was offered Rs 15 crore to do just one program against Justice Iftikhar Chaudhary. When I declined, it was said that they would not need to shoot me, a traffic accident would be enough. Musharraf didn’t like my relationship with Syed Ali Geelani and Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan. He said “why is every enemy of mine is your friend?”. I replied: “I am a journalist, I have to be in touch with everyone, even I have to meet Osama bin Laden”.  Once he strongly insisted that I should not meet Dr. Qadeer. The reason was that once Dr Qadeer called me to the Kahuta Research Laboratories and talked about Musharraf, after which the dangers not only increased for him but also for me. Later, Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali informed me that it has been decided to hand over Dr. Qadeer to America but he refused so he will be removed. Even today it is very difficult to speak or write something about this matter, but Jabbar Mirza has written many facts in his book “Akhri Bada Aadmi”. He writes that during the Kargil operation of May 1999, General Pervez Musharraf asked Dr. Qadeer to immediately provide short-range missiles from North Korea. Dr Qadeer took General Iftikhar Shah (former governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) with him and went to North Korea and brought 200 missiles. Meanwhile, the Kargil war ended, Musharraf told Dr. Qadeer that we no longer need missiles, you should return these missiles, we will not pay the money. Dr. Qadeer said that this does not happen in the transactions of states, the character of a nation is very important. Dr. Qadeer told this to the government at the time, on which Musharraf became very angry with him. Jabbar Mirza has written the entire background of a statement forcibly taken from Dr. Qadeer on Pakistan Television. The responsibility of executing the plan to coerce a confession from Dr Qadeer was given to the then Minister of Information Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed and important officers of the Ministry of Information and Sheikh Rashid got kudos from Musharraf for doing this. The biggest tragedy of Pakistan is that the scientist who made this country a nuclear power was made a villain and the general who broke the constitution twice is still the hero of General Bajwa. (Hamid Mir in Jang)
  • Sheikh Rashid’s arrest and the way he is being treated and the way Shehbaz Gul and Azam Swati were arrested before him is disturbing. The issue is not about any politician but about the procedure and systems. Why politicians do not understand that such actions have never benefited the country, nor has the system been strengthened. Due to such decisions and such actions, not only the country suffered, rather, the people’s confidence in democracy has taken a hit. Ironically, rulers in every era have not been able to prove anything against anyone in any case that can be called justice. It will not be wrong to say that we ourselves are engaged in destroying our country. Politicians are always busy proving each other wrong and defaming each other. Today they are being arrested, in the past they were arresting others, in the coming days someone else will be arrested. Can the country afford such a political situation? All the time is taken up with arrests, bails, courts, protests and no one has any time to talk about the common man. Floods have wreaked havoc in the country, despite being an agricultural country, food has become so expensive that two meals a day has become difficult. Dollars are depreciating and prices of petroleum products continue to rise. Medicines are becoming more expensive. No one is interested in discussing these issues. (Mohammed Akram Choudhary, Nawaiwaqt)
  • Almost every other media report is about a state of default looming large over Pakistan. But, is it the first time that we are facing such a situation? If we take a look at the last 15 years we would find Pakistan approaching China and Gulf countries every five years and begging that Pakistan does not have a pie to repay their loans and seeking a rescheduling. Such situations are no less than a state of bankruptcy when a country admits before other countries that it cannot repay their loans and is seeking rescheduling repayment. The only difference this time is: default mode will not be temporary but it can be permanent one. Be it Zulfikar Bhutto or Zardari, Pakistan is paying the price for earning the wrath  – because of Zulfikar wanting to bring up one Islamic block and because of Zardari wanting to give boost trade ties with China and Iran. The declassified American documents say very clearly that World Bank and IMF will be used as American “weapons” to make others toe to American foreign policy. Pakistan and the Philippines are two such countries that have been impacted in this connection. On the one hand, the media and experts say Pakistan’s bankruptcy is almost there, but our political class and establishment say Pakistan cannot default because of reasons like Pakistan is a big country, it has atom bomb and also because of Pakistan’s strategically important geographical location. The establishment and political class think that the world community will not allow Pakistan to disintegrate and fall apart and when Pakistan is about to fall apart, the world will rush to its rescue. Big problem for the government right now is that if it accepts IMF’s terms and conditions, it loses popularity and its vote bank. Dilemma for the government arises from the fact that if it does not take IMF loans, it is difficult to run the government. In order to take loans from other countries, the government has no option but to accept IMF’s harsh terms and conditions. This way, the government can just defer the onset of bankruptcy. It is because we have been tackling situations on an ad hoc basis that our crisis keeps getting worse and today we are in the most unpleasant situation. Next few years seem to be very tough for the country, putting very big question mark over its very survival.  Our political parties have no will, no inclination or ability to reform and set things right. And, we do not have truly revolutionary parties and no party has time to rise above factional feuds and ego hassles. Be it elected government or one under the army, they keep framing policies for the benefit of the one percent upper class, for their luxuries and for protecting their rights. And, this one per cent rules country neglecting remaining 99 per cent of populace. In fact, this is war of rich versus poor in the country and it has been going on for years. (Assar Imam in Sindh Exp)  
  • By now, PTI leaders would have realized that politics has no heart and pity. Politics should not mean only abusing and speaking out against opponents. Politics also should mean forgiving and taking opponents along. Imran Khan is no longer in power. Yet keeps trying to leave his influence here and there. He is perhaps the only politician enjoying a lot of leniency and concessions from powers that be (establishment). He is facing several cases; yet courts too are very lenient to him. If politics is to be used more for personal gains and interests than the larger and collective good of the country, then such kind of politics do not yield much. Imran Khan is a glaring example. He came to power for a long innings, at least 10 years but his innings was cut short. Today, he is facing corruption charges and involvement in scandals of his government. Can we expect any good from leaders like Imran Khan? So far, we have found him with a mindset which can only harm the nation. His recent movement (of jail bharo) has the same agenda. But, after spending a week in jail, not only PTI leaders but other cadres too (in PTI) will not be ready for this movement. If Imran Khan wants his movement to succeed, then he himself should first court arrest instead of his changing places from KPK to Punjab (Lahore) and then to Islamabad to escape arrest. There are very dim chances of success of jail bharo movement and it looks to be more on social media than on ground. More than jail bharo, it might turn out to be “social media bharo” in the days to come. (Akhtar Hafeez in Sindh Exp)  
  • The election commission has no law-and-order issue for holding bye elections on 65 national assembly seats, but Governors in KPK and Punjab say all is not well on law-and-order front and hence do not give election schedules for their provinces.  And, on the other hand, Imran Khan is issuing threats of jail bharo movement if election schedules are not announced for KPK and Punjab and if the government does not stop playing politics of vendetta against his party leaders. As intimidatory tactics, jail bharo stir is a good political strategy from Imran Khan to put pressure on the PDM government. But, if we assess the success of such a threat from PTI, then we can have doubts over the success of the jail bharo movement. Unlike in past when people hardly came out of their homes to cast votes during election time, people or pro-Imran section of voters might come to polling stations to cast vote for PTI candidates, but there are big doubts if these activists or supporters of Imran Khan will also court arrests in response to PTI call for jail bharo. Keep aside going to jails, this section of PTI supporters hesitate to pay even a visit to any police station; they are the ones who hesitate to even pass by police stations. That is the reason that we wonder how Imran Khan gave call for jail bharo movement. In Sindh, PTI is seen only in Karachi and nowhere else. Most people in Karachi are also hesitant when it comes to courting arrests. In Punjab too, people might vote for him, but they would not be ready for jails in show of support to Imran Khan. Youth in KPK might come out in his support and youth there might court arrest in show of support for him, but once again, Balochistan cannot be expected to come out in support to PTI’s call for jail bharo. Success of such movements depends on how much care is taken of participants in the movement and also on intentions and ideals of organizers/party leaders. For the success of such a movement, all factions in PTI need to come together and give a show of being united. Such movements fail when leaders behind such a stir (jail bharo) are the ones who do not want to see each other’s’ face too. Hence, “jail bharo” is good as a political card or pressure tactic, but will not make an impact on the country. (Gulam Hyder Khokhar in Pahenji, Feb.8)