DATE: 29-06-2016                                 


The Prime Minister has directed to expedite work on ongoing power projects for their completion on time.


The government has extended stay of registered Afghan refugees in the country for another six months.


Commerce Minister has directed to intensify trade diplomacy in European Union states after Britain's departure from the bloc.  


Pakistan has achieved tremendous success in anti-terror operations because of concerted efforts of the government and security forces.


World Health Organization has appreciated and offered all possible support to Pakistan in its health insurance program. 


The completion of Tarbela-IV Extension Hydropower Project will help the country save 900 million dollars in foreign exchange.


An 18 billion rupees Annual Development Programme for FATA for next fiscal year has been approved.


Presidents of Russia and Turkey have agreed to meet in person in a bid to improve bilateral relations.





Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has sought a detailed update on the progress of ongoing energy projects and given instructions for expediting work on them.


This was stated by Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar while chairing a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy in Islamabad on Wednesday.


The meeting reviewed progress on the ongoing power projects to see whether the timelines of the schedule of activities were being observed. The meeting also reviewed the status of energy projects which are in the pipeline.


Secretary Water and Power said that in line with the Prime Minister’s instructions, maximum facilitation has been provided to general public during Ramadan by ensuring smooth and uninterrupted supply of electricity at the time of Sehar and Iftar.


A proper mechanism has been in place to address complaints of any breakdown. He said despite severe heat wave experienced in early May and the resultant increased power usage, load management has been carried out with due care.


No power unit suffered any shut down this summer which helped maintain supply of electricity to the optimum possible level.                        



Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has strongly condemned attack on FC personnel in Quetta on Wednesday in which security personnel lost their lives.


In a statement, he said these attacks are signs of frustration of the smoking out terrorists.


The Prime Minister said that those who subscribe to terrorists and extremists' ideology will find no place to hide on our motherland.


He said peace in Balochistan has been restored due to the sacrifices of civilian and military Law Enforcement Agencies and we will make it sure that their sacrifices do not go in vain.


Nawaz Sharif also directed to extend best medical treatment to those critically injured during the attack.


He also prayed for eternal peace for the departed souls and strength to the bereaved families to bear this irreparable loss.


Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan has also condemned terrorist attack on FC officials and commiserated with the bereaved families.



Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has reiterated resolve of the Government to forge economic cooperation, enhancing trade and promoting communication linkages with Afghanistan.


He was talking to Afghan Ambassador Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal in Islamabad on Wednesday.


The Finance Minister said that both countries could play their due role in developing regional connectivity which would help open up the way to greater economic opportunities.


He emphasized the need to streamline movement of people across the border as it would in turn facilitate trade and economic activities.


Afghan Ambassador described the recent incidents at the Pak-Afghan border as unfortunate. He expressed the confidence that the two countries would continue to maintain close contacts with a view to prevent such happenings.



Commerce Minister Khurram Dastgir Khan has vowed to intensify trade diplomacy in the European Union countries after Britain's departure from the bloc.


In a statement issued in Islamabad on Wednesday, he stressed the need of looking for new trade partners and strengthening of relations with older ones in EU to safeguard Pakistan's economic interests. 


The Commerce Minister said Pakistan's exports to the United Kingdom under GSP Plus status, after Britain's decision of leaving the EU, will not be affected. 


He urged exporters to continue their exports to the United Kingdom without any concern as there is no immediate threat of ending GSP plus status of Pakistan by that country.



Minister for Climate Change Zahid Hamid says the Prime Minister will launch Green Pakistan Program along with the inauguration of the Monsoon Tree Planting Campaign 2016 on 14th August.


This he stated while chairing an inter-provincial meeting in Islamabad on Wednesday.


It was also decided in the meeting that federal, provincial and local governments will make arrangements for planting trees in Islamabad, provincial, divisional, district and tehsil headquarters.


The meeting also reviewed progress of spring Tree planting 2016.


To ensure keen participation of general public in tree planting drive, the provincial forest departments will publish special articles and take part in talk shows to enhance the importance of tree plantation.


A target of 109 million tree plantation throughout the country has been set for the next five years under Prime Minister's Green Pakistan Programme.



Minister for Religious Affairs Sardar Muhammad Yousaf says the government is taking special initiatives for interfaith and inter-sect harmony in the country.


He was talking to Imam-e-Kaaba Sheikh Saleh bin Hameed in Makkah on Wednesday. 


On the occasion, Imam-e-Kaaba said that current problems being faced by Ummah can be solved by removing the differences among various sects.


Sheikh Saleh bin Hameed said that Pakistan being the most important Muslim country always worked for unity of the Ummah. He said that Pakistan Saudi relations are of great importance.                    



Minister of State for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali has said that sustainable development could only be achieved with poverty alleviation besides protecting the environment.


Speaking at opening session of a two-day G-20 Conference on Energy Access in Beijing, he said rapid expansion of clean and sustainable energy offered a win-win solution for the poor and the environment.


Abid Sher Ali highlighted the importance of access to energy and sustainable development as a main challenge for developing countries.


He said that growth of renewable energy is necessary to provide energy services and create the economies of scale necessary for global expansion of renewable energy.   



Four Additional Judges of Sindh High Court took oath at a ceremony in Karachi on Wednesday.


Chief Justice Sindh High Court Justice Sajjad Ali Shah administered the oath. 


Those who took oath include Justice Muhammad Saleem Jessar, Justice Rasheed Ahmed, Justice Muhammad Humayun and Justice Arshad Hussain.


With the induction of four Additional Judges, the total number of the Judges of Sindh High Court has reached thirty-six.



Four Frontier Corps personnel were martyred in indiscriminate firing by unknown terrorists on their mobile on Double Road in Quetta on Wednesday evening.                                                                                                                           



Islamabad high court has reserved judgement on bail petition filed by former Minister for Religious Affairs Hamid Saeed Kazmi in Hajj corruption case.



Thirty two suspects, including seven Afghan nationals, have been arrested in a special operation in Islamabad.


Police sources said the operation was jointly conducted by police, Rangers, and other security agencies in Sabzi Mandi and adjoining areas of the federal capital.   



President Mamnoon Hussain has urged the Islamic countries to join hands to confront the menace of terrorism.


In a statement, he strongly condemned the terrorist attack in Turkey which left at least 41 people dead and over 230 injured.


Deploring the loss of precious lives in the despicable incident, he said the people of Pakistan stand by their Turkish brethren in this hour of grief.



Foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakaria says all Pakistanis are safe in blasts in Istanbul, Turkey.


In a message, he said Pakistan's Consulate in Istanbul is in constant touch with the authorities concerned including Governor Office.                       



Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has approved six month extension in the stay of registered Afghan refugees in Pakistan.


In directions issued to the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and States and Frontier Regions, the Prime Minister said Afghan refugees can stay in Pakistan by 31st December this year.


He directed the ministry of SAFRON to take up matter with Afghan authorities and United Nations Higher Commissioner for Refugees in this regard.


The Prime Minister said that Pakistan will supply free of cost wheat to the refugee camps to be set up in Afghanistan for three years as a goodwill gesture. He said the wheat will be provided on the basis of number of family members.



Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq has affirmed that the opposition's sit-ins would prove nothing but harming development and economic growth in the country.


Talking to the media outside the Punjab Assembly in Lahore, he said that everyone has the right to protest and the government could not stop them from taking to the streets.


The speaker said that the first two meetings on the terms of reference were held in good atmosphere; however, later on the matter could not be sorted out.



Terrorists have been defeated and peace has been restored in the country due to the collective efforts of the government, security forces and all other relevant departments.


Official sources told Radio Pakistan Peshawar correspondent that incidents of terrorism have sharply declined due to the sacrifices of general public, tribal people, security forces and political administration officials.


Before launching Operation Zarb-e-Azb, Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif took the parliament, politicians, traders and businessmen into confidence in this regard.


The sources said now main focus is on apprehending facilitators of the terrorists to ensure lasting peace in the country.                                                                                                                   



World Health Organization has lauded Pakistan's efforts towards polio eradication.       

This was conveyed by World Health Organization Regional Head Dr Ala Alwan while talking to Minister of State for Health Services Saira Afzal Tarrar in Islamabad on Wednesday.


The WHO regional head said complete polio eradication will be a landmark victory for Pakistan.


On the occasion, Saira Afzal Tarrar shared progress in the Prime Minister's health insurance program.


The WHO regional head while appreciating the program offered all possible support for the health insurance program.



National Assembly Standing Committee on Planning, Development and Reforms has been informed that a saving of foreign exchange worth 900 million dollar is expected after the completion of Tarbela Four Extension Hydropower Project.


It met in Islamabad on Wednesday under the Chairmanship of Abdul Majeed Khan Khanan Khail. 


The Committee recommended that the project may be completed on priority basis.


It expressed satisfaction over the progress of Balloki and Haveli Bahadur Shah, LNG power Projects.


The Committee was also informed that both the Projects were awarded through international bidding in accordance with Public Procurement Regulatory Authority rules.



Senate Standing Committee on Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage will meet on Thursday to get detailed briefing on Ramzan transmission on Television channels and role of Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority.


The meeting will be chaired by Senator Kamil Ali Agha.                      



Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra has approved Annual Development Programme of Federally Administered Tribal Areas for fiscal year 2016-17.


The total outlay of the FATA ADP is eighteen point two billion rupees.


The approval was given in a high level meeting held in Peshawar on Wednesday with Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra in the chair.


The meeting discussed in details the ongoing and new development programmes for FATA and expressed satisfaction over pace of work on these projects.


It was informed that fourteen point nine billion rupees have been allocated for seven hundred seventy-three ongoing development projects whereas three point two billion rupees have been fixed for two hundred twenty-nine new projects in the next fiscal year.



Prime Minister's Adviser Ameer Muqam called on Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra in Peshawar on Wednesday.


During the meeting, they exchanged views on different matters pertaining to political and law order situation in the province and FATA.


Speaking on the occasion, Ameer Muqam said reforms in FATA would be implemented according to the aspirations of tribal people.


He said Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz would present a report about the political future of FATA to the Prime Minister after his return to the country.



European Union will provide 46.8 million euros to Pakistan for the development of rural areas in Balochistan.


An agreement to this effect was signed in Islamabad on Wednesday.


Speaking on the occasion, EU representative said the organization will continue to provide developmental assistance to Pakistan.


Under another agreement, Germany has committed to provide six million euros to Pakistan to meet the challenge posed by climate change.                           



Overseas Pakistanis Foundation distributed 330 million rupees among 1110 families of deceased and disabled overseas Pakistanis under financial aid scheme during the current financial year.


OPF has distributed 719 million rupees among 7,631 families since inception of the scheme in 1981.


The cheques of OPF financial aid scheme were distributed to the deserving families of deceased overseas Pakistanis through OPF Regional Offices across the country in a simple and modest manner.


The cheques among the deserving families of Pakistani expatriates from Rawalpindi, Islamabad and adjacent areas were distributed by Managing Director OPF, Habib Ur Rahman Khan in Islamabad.


Speaking on the occasion, he said that OPF is working for the welfare of Pakistani expatriates and their dependents in all walks of life.  


He said that OPF Board of Governors has recently increased its financial aid scheme from two hundred and fifty thousand rupees to four hundred thousand rupees per family of deceased overseas Pakistanis and three hundred thousand rupees for disabled persons.



A month long pre-Hajj flight operation will commence from 3rd August and culminate on 4th September.


According to official from the Ministry of Religious Affairs, the first Hajj flights will leave for Saudi Arabia from Lahore and Karachi on 3rd August.


A total of 143,368 Pakistanis will perform Hajj this year, fifty percent each through government and private schemes.



Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah has issued directives to ensure cleaning of all the nullahs in Karachi on emergency basis for which four hundred and forty-five million rupees have been released. 


While presiding over a meeting in Karachi on Wednesday, he directed the Commissioner Karachi to monitor the cleaning himself.


The Chief Minister also directed the concerned authorities to ensure that rain water is pumped out from all the low lying areas of the city.



Karachi and its surrounding areas have been receiving intermittent downpour for the last twenty-four hours.


According to police and hospital sources, four people have died in rain-related incidents in the city.


The rain also affected power supply and several areas are without electricity. Water has accumulated in the low lying areas and efforts are being made to drain the water.


The Director General of Pakistan Meteorological Department has said that intermittent rains will continue for another twenty-four hours.


He said Karachi is expected to receive good amount of rain during this monsoon season that will last till August.



Director General Pakistan Meteorologist Department Dr Ghulam Rasul says that Met Department has made comprehensive arrangements to create awareness among the people about monsoon.


Talking with Radio Pakistan Correspondent Ijaz Hussain, he said predications of the department about the weather are 90 percent accurate and efforts are being made for further improvement made in this regard. 


Ghulam Rasul said effective communication system is being used between concerned departments to avoid any untoward incident during the monsoon season.                     



Deputy Chairman National Accountability Bureau Imtiaz Tajwar says NAB has adopted Zero Tolerance Policy and proactive approach to curb corruption and corrupt practices from the country.  


He was addressing an International Conference on Anti-corruption at Vienna in Austria.


He said NAB with improved infrastructure and rationalized workload; timelines have been prescribed for efficient, effective and expeditious disposal of case putting a maximum limit of 10 months.


He said NAB during the last 16 years has received about 313,452 complaints from individuals and private and public organizations.


During the period, NAB completed about 6,935 inquiries, 3537 investigations and filed 2544 corruption references.       



Pakistan has urged the United Nations to take solid step to meet humanitarian needs of millions of displaced around the world.


Addressing the "UN Economic and Social Council", Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the UN Maleeha Lodhi hoped that the international community's response to the world's weak and vulnerable people will be generous.


Ambassador Lodhi also urged the international community to prioritize the issue of Afghan refugees and help Pakistan and Afghanistan in their repatriation and resettlement in an honourable and sustainable manner.  


She called on the global community to better appreciate Pakistan's hospitality and its challenges in hosting the most protracted presence of refugees anywhere in the world.                    



In occupied Kashmir, leaders and activists of All Parties Hurriyet Conference, the Hurriyet forum led by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front held a sit-in protest in Srinagar on Wednesday, against India's anti-Kashmiri agenda.


The protesters led by JKLF Chairman Muhammad Yasin Malik assembled in Nowhatta area of Srinagar and chanted high-pitched anti-India and pro-freedom slogans.


They were protesting against India's designs to construct separate colonies for Indian soldiers and Kashmiri Pandits and Delhi's so-called industrial policy. The protesters warned India and its stooges that the people of Kashmir would launch a forceful agitation if any attempt was made to settle Pandits and Indian soldiers in separate colonies.


Meanwhile, Indian troops in their continued act of state terrorism, martyred one more youth in Lolab area of Kupwara district. The killing triggered massive protests in the area.  Pro-Pakistan, pro-freedom and anti-India slogans were raised on the occasion.


An Indian soldier committed suicide by shooting himself with his service rifle at Wussan camp in Ganderbal district.



Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan have agreed to meet in person in a bid to improve their ties.


They spoke by phone in a conversation that followed Ankara's expression of regret over the downing of a Russian warplane on the Syrian border by Turkish jets.


They also reiterated their commitment to reinvigorate bilateral relations and fight terrorism together. 



British Prime Minster David Cameron says keeping the United Kingdom together is of paramount importance.


Responding to concerns in the British parliament, he said his successor could begin negotiations with the European Union about the country's exit from the bloc before the formal 'Article 50' legal process is triggered.                                                      



European Union leaders say they are determined to stay united at 27 in the wake of the British referendum vote to leave the bloc.


After a summit without British Prime Minister David Cameron in Brussels, they warned Britain that if it wanted to continue to enjoy the seamless EU single market after its departure it would also have to accept that EU citizens can continue to enter Britain.



In Syria, at least ten people were killed and nine injured in car bomb blast in Tal Abyad town near the Turkish border on Wednesday.


Meanwhile, Kurds and their allies have now captured most of the Turkish border areas that had been under Islamic State's control, depriving its militants of routes through which they used to get foreign fighters and funds.



Human Rights Watch says Myanmar's government should amend and abolish laws that threaten freedom of expression.


In a report, it is said arrests of social media users whose posts are deemed distasteful have continued under National League for Democracy government led by Aung San Suu Kyi's 


The report said laws covering areas from telecommunications to defamation have been used to arrest at least 70 people this month.

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