M. M. ALAM
KARACHI: Arabian Sea Breeze kept on hissing through the swaying leaves of palms in the majestic mansion of (outgoing) US Consul General Grace Shelton, who gave a red carpet welcome to karachiites here on Thursday (15th of February). She was celebrating the National/Presidents Day and the 70th anniversary of the Pak-US relationship.
Speaking on the occasion to the members of diplomatic corps posted at the Port City, crème de la crème of the Metropolis including educationists, journalists, artists, civil and military bureaucrats, the host stated:
Honored guests and friends asalam-u-alaikum!
Thank you so much for joining us tonight as we celebrate our national day.
I would particularly like to welcome Chief Minister Sindh (Syed) Murad Ali Shah and Governor of Sindh Mohammad Zubair.
I’m delighted to welcome you all to the old Consul General’s residence for our tradition of celebrating National Day alongside Presidents Day.
I would like to thank everyone at the Consulate who has been working for months to make this event happen.
Organizing such an evening takes an excellent team, so thank you all!
I’m sorry to start out with some unfortunate news that Ambassador Hale fell ill at the airport in Islamabad today and so couldn’t fly down and was unable to make it here today.
He sends his apologies and regrets and we wish him a speedy recovery.
Turning to happier news and the reason why we’re all here today: this is a landmark National Day. In addition to celebrating America’s independence, we are also honoring 70 years of the strong partnership between the United States and Pakistan.
The focus of our partnership has remained consistent throughout our 70-year-partnership is our people. Together the United States and Pakistan have built better, safer and more prosperous lives for our citizens.
The United States has worked across Pakistani society to enhance Pakistan’s security, health and economic prosperity.
American assistance in the sphere of education has been particularly meaningful…The United States Agency for International Development has built 33 schools and is building or plans to build 73 more. (I’m looking at our colleague the minister of education. Thank You!)
Education and professional exchange programs bind our citizens, the Pakistan US exchange alumni network now boasts over 25 thousand members, the largest of its kind in the world.
Over 2 thousand PhD and graduate students have participated in academic exchanges like the Fulbright Scholarship and the Pakistani government pledged $25 million to support the next generation of Fulbright Scholars and future leaders, evidence of a shared commitment to education.
The United States has partnered with you to supply healthcare to 8.8 million women and children in Sindh alone and trained thousands of new health practitioners.
American assistance helped vaccinate more than half a million children against deadly preventable diseases. Many people can now live longer and healthier lives. The United States has also worked closely with our law enforcement partners in Sindh and Balochistan to help police better protect themselves and therefore better protect Pakistani citizens.
We recently donated 5 thousand bulletproof vests to the Sindh Police and we provided 3 thousand bulletproof vests as well as 6 armored personnel vehicles to police in Balochistan.
So over 70 years we have worked together to better the lives of Pakistanis and Americans.
As most of you know I will be leaving Pakistan soon.
As a diplomat I’ve found this tour to be one of the most rewarding of my career. Since I arrived in Karachi in 2016 Pakistanis – both inside and outside the city – have offered me incredibly warm welcome. The hospitality in Sindh has been unbelievable.
I’ve been fortunate to have seen, time and again, the tangible products of our enduring bilateral relationship.
Our 70 years of strong partnership is a foundation that represents tremendous opportunities to work together to build a brighter future for Pakistan, And I’m privileged to have spent 18 months, leading the team here in Karachi, doing exactly that.
From the deepest place in my heart I thank you for sharing your culture and your friendship, I will cherish my memories of Pakistan forever!Presentation of Colors! National Anthem of PakistanNational Anthem of USAHost addresses the ladies and gentlemen in the audience!Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah speaking on the occasion!(L-R) Consul General of USA Grace Shelton, Acting Consul General John Warner, Governor Sindh Muhammad Zubair and Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah used a ceremonial sword to cut the cake on the occasion. Consul General of the United States of America Grace Shelton pose for the lens flanked by Editor NPTV M. M. ALAM & GS PFUJ G. M. Jamali!
KMC, Chinese company to upgrade city streetlights
KARACHI: Karachi Metropolitan Corporation has started work on converting city streetlights into modern LED energy saver solar light system on all 108 KMC roads with the cooperation of a renowned Chinese company, for better performance and low cost.
In this connection, a Memorandum of Strategic Cooperation (MSC) was signed on Friday by Mayor Karachi Wasim Akhtar and representative of CCCC Xi`an Road Construction Machinery Company (XRMC) Pvt Ltd, said a statement. Senior director coordination Masood Alam, senior director culture and sports Rehan Khan with officers of Mechanical and Engineering department were also present on the occasion. With this streetlights reform project, XRMC may also assist KMC to draw up “municipal road lighting standard and municipal streetlights standard project.” Through the cooperation of the streetlights energy-saving project, XRMC may conduct the detailed survey, design the proposal of KMC’s lighting in Karachi, then effectively promote the streetlights energy-saving reform project to Lahore and other places to save more electrical energy.
Both KMC and XRMC are committed to strengthening the cooperation in the field of the service capacity of infrastructure in the field of energy-saving LED lights. XRMC has rich development and management experience in municipal government streetlights and smart-city, as well as enjoys the comparative advantage of production capacity in China and XRMC is promoting several National level municipal streetlights reform projects in many countries like Norway, Cambodia, and Indonesia.
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.
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 NewsPakistan.tv 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.