Daily Briefs

Photo : Dawn

27 June 2020, Saturday, Vol 1, No.60

PTM accepts the dialogue offer, but wants CBMs

PTM accepts the dialogue offer, but wants CBMs; Foreign ministry says Pakistan's case was not taken at the FATF's June meeting

PR Daily Brief | PR Team

In Brief

PTM accepts the Government's dialogue offer, but wants CBMs
The Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) chief has said that PTM is ready to bring out the problems of issues of Pashtun, but if they weren't met, it would lead to protests. One of the MNA stated that there had been a shift in the State policy for peace and development. As the economy is at the State of collapse, only peace can restore the economy. According to another MNA, people in the tribal districts lack education, healthcare and communication infrastructure facilities and it was high time the leaders did something than engaging in conflict. The chief necessitated that Government must build "confidence-building measures (CBMs) to demonstrate their sincerity" (Iftikhar A. Khan, "PTM says ready for talks but calls for confidence-building measures," Dawn, 27 June 2020)

Foreign Office states that Pakistan's case was not taken up at the FATF meeting
On 26 June, the Foreign Office stated that Pakistan's case was not taken up at the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) plenary meeting which was held 24 June and that it would remain on the 'grey list' till October, further stating that no new decision was made. At the last plenary meeting, Pakistan was given a six-month extension which was until June 2020 to remain on the grey list in order to meet the remaining requirements of its action plan, however with a warning that action would be taken if significant progress was not shown especially in prosecuting and penalising terrorism financing cases. At the next plenary cycle in October, the FATF will evaluate the progress of Pakistan on the Action Plan. Further, the FO said, "Pakistan remains committed to completing its FATF Action Plan and continues to make progress." Pakistan has been on the grey list since June 2018. ("Pakistan's case not taken up at FATF meeting: FO," Dawn, 27 June 2020)

"Any onslaught on judicial independence must be resisted": Analysis
The author Ziaullah Ranjah says judges' accountability must be in accordance with the law. He says that in Justice Isa's case, the context must be appreciated before understanding and applying the law. He questions the ability of FBR to conduct an independent enquiry considering the lack of institutional independence, the reference's malicious background and the ruling Government's dismissal of sane advice. ("Independence of judiciary," The Friday Times, 26 June 2020)

Federal cabinet to decide the fate of pilots with "dubious licences"
On 26 June, the Aviation Minister announced that the federal cabinet will decide the fate of 28 commercial pilots for having 'dubious licences' after an enquiry was made into the matter, the minister also stated that criminal proceedings would be initiated against them after the cabinet decision. Further, the minister added that 262 pilots had been indicted by a board of inquiry for on the ground of faking their test results; thus they will also be barred from flying. The minister also announced the suspension of five Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) officials associated with its licensing branch, who were suspended after an inquiry and on consultation with the law department the case may be referred over to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) for criminal proceedings against them. Further, the minister stated "The clean-up operation was necessary in the airline. It all happened only due to out-of-merit appointments." (Mohammad Asghar, "Cabinet to decide fate of pilots with dubious licences," Dawn, 27 June 2020)

The Government has coped to appease the oil marketing companies (OMCs)
The prices of petrol should have been lower at this point of economic crisis and pandemic, but instead, the prices are at hike this was due to the fear of loss in inventory for the OMCs. Even though the supply crisis was present, the Government did not take any measure to lower the prices. The petroleum division PSO survived the loss of Rs17 billion by selling the products outside the country at low rates, but the private OMCs did not share in the losses and kept on hoarding. This price hike has raised complaints from the opposition leaders, and the Chairman of PPP has said that this surge in petrol prices will result in Inflation in the country. (Israr Khan, "Record hike in petroleum prices," The News International, 27 June 2020)

Will raise the Kashmir issue before the world on 5 August: PM
At a ceremony in Muzafarabad, PM Imran Khan stated that Pakistan would vigorously raise the Kashmir issue before the world on 5 August to push for the settlement once again. He added "There will be a movement across the globe on 5 August and afterwards to remind the world community of what's happening in Indian occupied Kashmir," further adding that preparation will be made in advance with the help of Pakistanis and Kashmiris living all over the world. These statements came in view of Article 370 being repealed by the Government of India on 5 August last year.  (Tariq Naqash, "Kashmir issue to be raised before world on 5 August: Imran," Dawn, 27 June 2020)

India is a bigger challenge than Covid-19 for South Asia: Analysis
An analysis by Ejaz Haider slams the Modi-led BJP government in India for social ostracization, economic isolation and persecution of Muslims, citing the incidents of "Cow vigilantism, Ghar Waapsi converting Muslims to Hinduism), and Love Jihad (lynching Muslims for marrying any Hindu girl)". The article says the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) aim to "identify, isolate and persecute Muslims". Haider criticizes the Blob of not acknowledging the rights conditions in India and considering India as a strategic partner and market with great potential. ("India: the Reality and the Blob," The Friday Times, 26 June 2020)

Pandemic shows shortfalls in India's health sector
An analysis says that India's health sector is chronically underfunded and that Covid-19 has overburdened government hospitals. It says the pandemic has put India's shortcomings on display: poor sanitation and hygiene protocols, steeping daily expenses for coronavirus treatment, the rich-poor socio-economic divides, lack of accessibility and Government's incompetency were mentioned with cases. ("Corona care exposes India's entrenched social inequalities," The News International, 27 June 2020) 


"The agenda of FATF’s virtual plenary meeting, held on 24 June 2020, did not include Pakistan. In this virtual plenary meeting, no new decision regarding Pakistan was made...Pakistan has also been raising the issue of India’s dubious credentials as an impartial and objective assessor of Pakistan’s progress on the FATF Action Plan. India’s efforts to misuse the technical forum of FATF for discrediting Pakistan have been noticed by FATF members and are not appreciated by the international community."

- Pakistan's Foreign Office on the FATF decision on 24 June meeting (Dawn)


In Focus and In Brief sections are prepared by Lakshmi V Menon, Abigail Miriam Fernandez and A Padmashree.

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