Text Bulletin 2000 hrs
Prime Minister has expressed confidence that he and his family will emerge triumphant in the courts of law and people.
Ministry of Information Technology and private mobile companies have signed an agreement for provision of 3G services in Dera Bugti, Kharan and Washuk districts of Balochistan.
Public welfare and development oriented budgets of Balochistan and Azad Kashmir for the next fiscal year were presented on Thursday.
Foreign Office says Pakistan and China are making concerted efforts for restoring peace in Afghanistan.
OIC Secretary General has called upon India to immediately stop systematic human rights violations in occupied Kashmiri.
Qatar has signed a deal to buy F-15 fighter jets from the United States.
Russian President has deplored new US sanctions against Moscow.
India are chasing victory target of 265 runs against Bangladesh in the second semi-final of ICC Champions Trophy at Edgbaston.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif says his appearance before Joint Investigation Team is a milestone for rule of law and supremacy of the Constitution.
He was talking to media in Islamabad on Thursday afternoon after over two and a half hours appearance before the JIT probing allegations into Panama Papers case.
The Prime Minister said never before in the history of the country, three generations of a family were held accountable the way it has been done with his family. The Prime Minister said the present process of accountability has been extended to time before his birth.
Nawaz Sharif said he and his family have repeatedly been subjected to merciless accountability but no allegation of corruption had ever been proved. He expressed the confidence that the outcome of the ongoing inquiry will not be different as he and his family have not committed any wrongdoings.
The Prime Minister pointed out that first accountability of his family began in 1972 when their assets were nationalized. Then the PPP government pursued the policy of victimization of his family but could not find anything wrong.
Nawaz Sharif said had there been any evidence of corruption against him or his family, Musharraf would not have instituted a false case of plane hijacking against him.
Referring to the on-going investigations, the Prime Minister said all documents relating to his own assets and those of his family are already with the Supreme Court and on Thursday he once again handed them over to the JIT.
The Prime Minister emphatically stated that what is going on has nothing to do with corruption or bungling of government resources. He said purely personal and family matters and businesses are being complicated and politicized.
He said JIT report and the Supreme Court verdict in the case will be announced soon but we must remember that there will be a people's JIT next year. He said we all will have to present ourselves before JIT of 200 million people of Pakistan. He said above all, we will have to appear before the court of Almighty Allah Who is not dependent on any JIT.
The Prime Minister hoped that he and his family will emerge triumphant in the courts of law and people.
Maryam Nawaz says Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has created history by appearing before the JIT.
In a tweet, she said others should also follow the suit.
Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif says Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has written a new history by appearing before the Joint Investigation Team.
In a statement, he said PML-N always respected state institutions.
The Chief Minister said Nawaz Sharif despite being an elected prime minister, has presented himself and his family for accountability.
He said that it was the Prime Minister who proposed the formation of a judicial commission to probe Panama Papers case.
Shahbaz Sharif said transparent policies of PML-N government are being acknowledged at international level.
Minister for Defence Production Rana Tanveer Hussain says anti-development forces do not want to see Pakistan progressing in various fields.
In an interview on Thursday, he said economic achievements of the country are being acknowledged at world level.
The Minister said people will reject the elements involved in conspiracies against the government in the next elections.
PML (N) leader Daniyal Aziz says JIT has leveled allegations against institutions but presented no evidence in this regard.
Talking to newsmen in Islamabad on Thursday, he said JIT's allegations are based on talk shows, newspaper clips and twitter accounts.
Daniyal Aziz pointed out that the Prime Minister and his family have presented themselves for accountability but the PTI chief is not appearing before the law and the courts to respond to allegations against him.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar says PML-N government is leading Pakistan to the path of development according to its charter.
He was addressing a contract signing ceremony between Ministry of Information Technology and private mobile companies for the provision of 3G services in Dera Bugti, Kharan and Washuk districts of Balochistan and establishment of National Incubation Centers at Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar.
The Minister said due to effective policies of the government a large number of renowned international firms are expressing interest to invest in the country. He said macroeconomic indicators of the country point toward the fact that economy is standing on stable and sound footings.
He said PML-N government is working to make Pakistan digitally and economically strong. He said government strongly believes in policy of transparency, good governance and accountability.
Federal Minister for Commerce Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan says work on Strategic Trade Policy Framework will be completed by the end of this year.
He was addressing a meeting of senior officials of the Commerce Ministry in Islamabad on Thursday.
Secretary Commerce Younus Dagha while briefing the meeting said that work on E-commerce framework and law for geographical indication is being completed on fast track basis.
The Commerce Minister was also told that steps have been taken to boost trade and as a result bilateral trade between Pakistan and Iran has crossed 1 billion dollar mark.
Balochistan budget for the next fiscal year with a total outlay of over 325 billion rupees was presented on Thursday.
Presenting the budget in the provincial assembly in Quetta on Thursday, Advisor to Chief Minister on Financial Affairs Sardar Aslam Bezanjo said over 86 billion rupees have been allocated for developmental expenditures.
Aslam Bezanjo said over 50 billion rupees have been allocated for the education sector.
He said over 21 billion rupees have been earmarked for promotion of health sector.
The advisor said improvement of law and order has been given great importance and over 31 billion rupees have been allocated for the purpose.
He said eight billion rupees will be spent on agriculture sector.
He said energy sector has also been given a considerable significance in the budget and over two billion rupees have been kept in the budget for conversion of water supply schemes into solar energy system.
The Advisor said nearly 8000 new vacancies will be created for the jobless educated youth in the province. He said a special Balochistan Education Enabler Programme will be launched and 200 million rupees have been allocated for the purpose.
Aslam Bezanjo said seven billion rupees have been allocated in the budget for over three hundred schemes in communication sector.
The Advisor announced ten percent increase in the salaries and pension of the government employees on the pattern of Federal Government.
Azad Jammu and Kashmir tax free budget for the fiscal year 2017-18 with total outlay of over 94 billion rupees was presented on Thursday.
Presenting the budget in the AJK legislative Assembly in Muzaffarabad, AJK Finance Minister Dr. Najeeb Naqi said total expenditures for next financial year have been estimated over 71 billion rupees.
He said 23 billion rupees have been allocated for the development, which shows a hundred per cent increase.
The Minister said 30 billion rupees have been reflected as part of federal development program.
Dr. Najeeb Naqi said out of the total development estimates, 39 percent have been allocated for communication, 15 percent for power generation projects, 9 percent for local government and rural development, 8 percent for foreign funded projects, 7 percent for physical planning and housing while 22 percent for other sectors.
He said 86 percent funds have been allocated for the ongoing 154 schemes while 32 percent for new development schemes.
The Minister said 22,551 million rupees have been earmarked for education and 6,626 million rupees for the health sector.
He announced ten percent increase in the salaries of government employees and pensioners after merger of 2010 adhoc allowance in the basic pay.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has decided preparing Foreign Investment Policy to facilitate foreign investment process in the province.
Pakistan believes that Afghan-owned and Afghan-led political settlement is imperative for restoring long-lasting peace in Afghanistan.
This was stated by Foreign Office Spokesperson Nafees Zakaria during the weekly press briefing in Islamabad on Thursday.
While rejecting a military solution to Afghan conflict, he said the country has been in a war like situation for the last forty years. Pakistan has suffered tremendously due to the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan.
Replying to a question, the spokesperson said longstanding conflicts in Afghanistan have given space to non-state actors.
He said China and Pakistan are making concerted efforts for restoring peace in Afghanistan.
He, however, said internal weaknesses of Afghanistan should not be blamed on others.
Regarding the sideline meeting of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the Russian President Vladimir Putin during the SCO summit, the spokesperson said an immense potential exists in the field of education, culture, trade, and defense for further boosting the bilateral relations.
Nafees Zakaria said Pakistan welcomes mediation offer by Russian President to ease tension between Islamabad and New Delhi.
He pointed out that showing complete disrespect to the holy month of Ramazan, Indian forces martyred more than 25 Kashmiris and injured over 200 using brute force and pellet guns in Occupied Kashmir.
The Spokesperson said Pakistan has broached this issue with UN Human Rights officials in Geneva. Pakistan has also effectively taken up violations of Kashmiris' rights and Indian atrocities at the 35th session of Human Rights Council in Geneva.
Responding to a question, Nafees Zakaria regretted that Indian authorities did not permit Sikh pilgrims having valid visas to travel to Pakistan for "Jor Mela".
Afghan Ambassador Hazrat Omer Zakhilwal called on Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayyaz Sadiq in Islamabad on Thursday.
Matters pertaining to bilateral relations and mutual interest were discussed during the meeting.
Speaking on the occasion, the Speaker National Assembly said a peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan is inevitable for peace and prosperity of the region.
In his remarks on the occasion, the Afghan ambassador said close cooperation between the two neighboring countries is in the best interest of the two peoples as well as the whole region.
Foreign Office spokesperson says India's contention to strike out Pakistan's claim to the funds transferred by the State of Hyderabad to the account of Pakistan High Commissioner to UK in September 1948 was dismissed last year.
In a query, the FO spokesperson said the English judge has now issued a side procedural ruling on the cost issue.
He said the judge has confirmed that Pakistan won on all its main arguments and has reserved costs to the end of the hearing, which is a standard order.
On the cost issue, which has been argued separately, it was decided that the financial claims made by India and other parties were not time-barred.
The Spokesperson said these are a tiny fraction of the overall costs which Pakistan may recover at the end of the process, if successful.
Hundreds of thousands of faithful will start observing Itikaf from on Friday in the country, practicing the Sunnah of Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (SAW).
The faithful observing Itikaf will sit-in seclusion in mosques and worship till the sighting of Shawwal moon. During this period, they will offer special prayers and seek Allah Almighty's blessings and mercy.
In major mosques like Faisal Masjid in Islamabad, lectures from religious scholars have specially been arranged for Itikaf observers to educate them about true Islamic teachings.
Prime Minister's Focal Person on Polio Eradication Ayesha Raza says the number of polio cases in Pakistan has decreased from three hundred and six in 2014 to two on Thursday.
Talking to the founder of Microsoft Bill Gates in the United States, she said joint efforts are needed to make this world polio free. She lauded efforts of Bill Gates for eradication of polio.
Bill Gates said with help of polio eradication campaign sixteen million children will be saved from disability across the world.
OIC Secretary General Dr. Yousef Al-Othaimeen has called upon India to immediately stop excessive acts of systematic human rights violations in occupied Kashmir.
In a statement, he reiterated the OIC's principled position in supporting the Kashmiri people in their just struggle for their right to self-determination.
The Secretary General said the Kashmiris have been suffering from non-implementation of the UN Security Council resolutions.
Condemning the continued use of force by the Indian security forces, he expressed his sorrow over the recent incidents resulting in death and injury of several Kashmiris.
In Occupied Kashmir, Chairman All Parties Hurriyet Conference, Syed Ali Gilani, has expressed serious concern over the continued harassment of resistance leader, Altaf Ahmed Shah by India's National Investigation Agency
In a statement in Srinagar, Ali Gilani warned New Delhi over the worsening health of Altaf Ahmed Shah.
He said India's National Investigation Agency has no evidence against Altaf Shah or any other Hurriyet leader. They are trying to make false cases against Hurriyet leadership and putting pressure to weaken our freedom movement.
Qatar has signed a deal to buy F-15 fighter jets from the United States.
Under the agreement, Qatar will purchase thirty six fighter jets worth 12 billion dollars from the United States.
According to a statement by the Pentagon, in Washington, the sale of fighter jets will increase security cooperation and interoperability between the two countries.
The statement said the US Defence Secretary James Mattis and Qatari Minister of State for Defence Affairs Khalid al-Attiyah have discussed the current state of operations against the Islamic State group and the importance of de-escalating tensions so that all partners in the gulf region can focus on next steps in meeting the common goals.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has deplored the new sanctions imposed on Moscow by the United States.
Speaking in a live call-in show, he criticized the US Senate's decision and termed it as a reflection of western efforts to contain Russia.
He said the measure only have made the country stronger and will reduce its dependence on energy exports.
The US Senate had approved a wide-ranging package of sanctions against Moscow for interfering in the 2016 election that targets key sectors of Russia's economy and individuals who carried out cyber attacks.
In China, seven people were killed and more than sixty others injured in an explosion at a nursery in Fengxian country in the eastern province of Jiangsu on Thursday.
According to local officials, the blast took place outside the main gate of the nursery when parents and relatives were picking up their children at the end of the school timing.
The cause of the blast is not clear yet.
In Somalia, thirty one people were killed and forty others injured in an attack by armed assailants on a hotel in capital Mogadishu.
Security officials said a gunman first rammed an explosive-laden car into the gate of the hotel while other gunmen stormed in.
They said security forces ended the siege of the hotel and killed all the five attackers.