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Legislators asked to review labor legislation, make them according to ILO standards



KARACHI: Members of Civil Society and Labor Leaders called upon the legislators of Sindh Assembly to review and amend all the labor laws passed by present assembly by making them compliant to ILO Conventions. They also urged the parliamentarians to frame a coordinated implementation strategy of the labor and human rights laws.

The labor leaders and civil society activists were speaking at a consultation with the members of Sindh Assembly organized by Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER) at a local hotel.

Justice (Ret) Majida Razvi, Chairperson of Sindh Human Rights Commission (SHRC) presided over and MPAs belonging to almost all political parties in Sindh Assembly attended the meeting. Members of Sindh Assembly included Ms. Kulsoom Chandio, Saeed Khan Nizamani, Ameer Hyder Sheerazi, Diwan Chand Chawla, Ms. Saira Shahliani, Saeed Khan Nizamani ,Waqar Hussain Shah, Ms. Shahnaz, Ms. Rana Ansar, Haji Safi Mohammad Jamote, MPA.

Justice (Ret) Majida Razvi of SHRC said common people are suffering the most because of consumption of the polluted water and lack of healthcare facilities in the province. There is a lack of access to justice in the society, she added.

Karamat Ali, Executive Director of PILER said despite the fact Sindh Assembly has made record legislation in labour, however, their implementation is still a cause of concern.

It is encouraging that European Union has extended the Generalized System of Preference (GSP)-Plus scheme for Pakistan to export duty free products in the European market. It would have been unfortunate if this GSP-Plus was withdrawn, however, this is extended for the next two years.

All 27 international conventions pertaining to human rights, labour rights, environmental protection and good governance needed to be implemented. Karamat Ali asked the legislators to make the already passed laws compliant to ILO standards.

He appreciated the Sindh government for giving first-ever Labor Policy and holding the provincial Tripartite Labor Conference and said the EU’s review report has especially mentioned holding of Tripartite Labor Conference.  

The Sindh Labor Policy is in fact an election manifesto for PPP government and all political parties should include the points in the Labor Policy in their Election Manifestoes.

MPA from Pakistan Peoples’ Party Kulsoom Chandio said the present provincial assembly has made record legislation. However, he regretted that implementation of those laws is still is a major cause of concern.

MPA from Pakistan Muslim League (Functional) Mohammad Rafiq Banbhan said agriculture workers are not getting the same facilities, which the industrial workers are  enjoying like social security and oldage benefits.

Habibuddin Junaidi said the provincial government of Sindh is seriousness in implementation on Labour Policy. He said minimum wages are fixed at Rs. 15,000 for unskilled workers, but unfortunately this rate is also not paid in most of industries in the province.

In her presentation, senior research Ms. Zeenat Hisam said that most of Pakistani labour laws are not compliant to the international conventions. She said Process of provincial law-making is slow, restrictive clauses have been retained in several laws and tripartite consultation is reported but feedback not always accommodated.

Ms. Zeenia Shaukat gave an overview of human rights situation in Pakistan. She said enforced disappearance cases have increased in recent years but the government is denying. Freedom of expression, right to association and assembly are severely curbed. Media is restricted and new cyber legislation is anti-right of expression. Misuse of Blasphemy law is reported and minorities are considering themselves unsafe in Pakistan.

Human Rights activist Zulfiqar Shah from PILER gave a presentation about GSP-Plus and its compliance in Pakistan. He suggested to initiate oversight of relevant ministries and institutions, follow up of periodic reporting  and compliance to observations /recommendations, budget allocation for the human rights institutions like SHRC and create a debate on human rights reforms agenda.

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PM Imran Khan arrives in Karachi!



KARACHI: Prime Minister Imran Khan arrived in Karachi today on a day-long visit in order to review the Metropolis’ political situation and ongoing development projects. 

Here the PM was received at the airport by Governor Sindh Imran Ismail and other PTI leaders.  Later he held a one-on-one meeting with the Governor at Governor House.

In the backdrop of the ongoing anti-encroachment drive, the members of the business community (including those affected) are seeing him today.

KARACHI: A delegation of officials and stockbrokers of Pakistan Stock Market Exchange, led by its Chairman Sulaiman Mehdi, called  PM and discussed matters apropos economy. 


PM maintained that the government was committed to promote and protect businesses. He held that vast opportunities of investment are available in Pakistan. According to him, foreign investors are expressing interest to invest in various sectors of the economy.  He said that his government’s approach towards business and investment was different and steps were being taken to bring stability in the market. When delegation informed him about the issues faced by the PSX and brokers. PM approved most of their suggestions.  The PM and the delegation agreed to stop illegal transactions and expand the tax base.  Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) delegation (comprised of prominent industrialists Siraj Qasim Teli, Tahir Khaliq, Haroon Agar, Shamim Firpo, and Junaid Ismail Makda) also called on the PM. 

Relevant I: Prime Minister Imran Khan said today that the government had come up with a positive mindset to protect and promote the business and investment besides bringing stability in the market. In a meeting with a delegation of the office bearers and brokers of Pakistan Stock Market Exchange headed by Suleman Mehdi, the Prime Minister said he had arrived here to seek their suggestions for the betterment of the national economy. He said the foreign investors were investing their capital in the country because there existed a huge potential for investment. The delegation felicitated the Prime Minister on assumption of the office and lauded the efforts by government’s economic team for economic stability. The delegation apprised the Prime Minister on various matters regarding the stock market and put forward the proposals for financial stability most of which were accepted by the Prime Minister. The delegation assured that they would extend all-out support to the government for its financial policies. During the meeting, they agreed to widen the tax base, promotion of IT in the stock market and curb the issue of illegal payments. The meeting was also attended by Finance Minister Asad Umar, Planning Minister Khusro Bakhtiar, Water Resources Minister Faisal Vawda, Maritime Affairs Minister Ali Zaidi, IT Minister Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Sindh Governor Imran Ismail, State Minister Hammad Azhar, PM’s Adviser Dr Ishrat Hussain and Special Assistants to PM Naeemul Haq and Iftikhar Durrani.

Relevant II: Prime Minister Imran Khan today reiterated his resolve to steer the country out of the difficult times and maintained that the country was not deficient in anything, the only thing; it needed was an investor-friendly environment.  He said the government had fully focused on bridging the gap between imports and exports and assured that there would be no difficulty in running a business. The Prime Minister was talking to delegations of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FPCCI) and prominent businessmen, PM Office media wing in a press release said.  The Prime Minister told the delegation that he had come to listen to their issues and find an immediate solution. The unemployment issue could be overcome by imparting skills to the youth, he added. He said the government wanted uniform development of the whole country and eradication of poverty. Pakistan would progress when the environment for business and investment was conducive, he added. The Prime Minister also expressed the resolve to root out corruption. The delegation presented different suggestions and apprised the Prime Minister about their issues, over which the Prime Minister issued prompt directions.

Relevant III) Prime Minister Imran Khan said today the government would eradicate unemployment through the expansion of industries and would cap the gap between imports and exports. He was talking to a delegation of Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) that called on him, PM Office media wing in a press release said.  The Prime Minister urged the industrialists to give further suggestions for the promotion of industry.  Under previous proposals by the industrialists and businessmen, the revenue and policy wings of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) were separated, so that effective planning and its implementation could be ensured. The delegation included prominent industrialists Siraj Qasim Teli, Tahir Khaliq, Haroon Agar, Shamim Firpo, Junaid Ismail Makda and others. Finance Minister Asad Umar, Planning Minister Khusro Bakhtiar, Water Resources Minister Faisal Vawda, Maritime Affairs Minister Ali Zaidi, IT Minister Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Sindh Governor Imran Ismail, State Minister Hammad Azhar, PM’s Adviser Dr Ishrat Hussain and Special Assistants to PM Naeemul Haq and Iftikhar Durrani were also present during the meeting. The delegation apprised the Prime Minister about different issues of industries in Karachi and made certain suggestions for the expansion of the industry.  The issues of gas supply to industry, controlling power theft, increase in exports and small and medium enterprises also came under discussion. The Prime Minister told the delegation that instructions had already been passed by the cabinet regarding the provision of complete protection to the poor during the anti-encroachment drive.

Relevant IV) Prime Minister Imran Khan said today that ease of doing business was among the top priorities of his government and it always welcomed the private sector for undertaking public welfare and investment promotion ventures. He was talking to a delegation of Overseas Investors’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry that called on him, PM Office media wing in a press release said. The prime minister observed that technology companies could support the government in different sectors. With the use of IT, innovation and improvement in service delivery could be made in various sectors including education, health, and governance. The work in this regard had already been started, he added. During the meeting, matters related to one-window facilitation, digitization of services and tax, for the promotion of investment and businesses were also discussed. The delegation comprised Irfan Wahab, CEO Telenor Pakistan / President OICCI, Shazia Syed, chairperson & CEO Unilever Pakistan / Vice President OICCI, Ghias-ud-Din Khan, CEO Engro Pakistan, Sarim Sheikh, CEO General Electric Pakistan, Helmut von Struve, MD Siemens Pakistan, Shehzad G Dada, CEO Standard Chartered Bank Pakistan, Anis Ahmed, MD Abbott Labs. Ltd, Ghazanfar Ali, CEO IBM Pakistan, and Abid Zaidi, CEO Microsoft Pakistan.

KARACHI: PM meets FPCCI delegation.


KARACHI: PM seen meeting PTI MNAs Sindh Chapter.





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Explosion near Karachi’s Perfume Chowk, 6 hurt (TEXT AND VIDEO)



KARACHI: Six people got injured as a result of a cracker explosion carried out at Mehfil-e-Milad arranged by MQM-P (sans official permission) near Perfume Chowk here in the Gulistan-e-Jauhar area late night

Wounded are being shifted to nearby medical facilities. According to details, while MQM-P’s Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui was present on the stage at the event, Sindh Assembly’s former opposition leader Khawaja Izhar-ul-Hassan was sitting on the front row with the audience.

A worker of MQM-P’s communication department is reportedly among the injured. Convener and members of Rabita Committee are said to have remained unhurt. As expected there was a stampede after the explosion but that did not cause any casualty. Windowpane glasses of nearby buildings were shattered while many motorcycles were also partially damaged. The area has been cordoned off as an investigation is being carried out. 

Sources privy to had earlier insinuated that the explosive was hidden in a plant pot near the stage. Whereas, SSP East Capt (R) Ghulam Azfar Mahessar later informed that a cracker was thrown at the participants of the Mehfil-e-Milad, by unidentified motorcyclists, parts of which had been recovered from the scene of the crime by BDU.  

However, it later transpired that a 250-300 gram planted IED was detonated by means of a remote-control device. 


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PFUJ President GM Jamali and others attend Shafiuddin Ashraf’s funeral!



PFUJ President GM Jamali

KARACHI: PFUJ President G. M. Jamali, KUJ President Hasan Abbas, Senior journalist Mazhar Abbas, Secretary General APNEC Shakeel Amin Kanga and a large number of journalists and representatives of various organizations attended the funeral prayers of  Shafiuddin Ashraf here today at Rahmania Mosque, Buffer Zone. 

Later the burial took place at Model Colony graveyard. Shafiuddin Ashraf was chairman APNEC and General Secretary of the Dawn Employee’s Union.

PFUJ President G.M. Jamali, eulogizing the services of Shafiuddin Ashraf has said that his contribution in the field of journalism would be remembered. Conveying his deepest sympathy to the grieving family he prayed for the departed soul. 


A relevant piece published earlier: 

PFUJ President GM Jamali condoles sad demise of Shafiuddin Ashraf

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