Flashpoint – Sept 12, 2019

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What’s Happening?

The news stories today report on Pakistan’s compliance report to Asia Pacific Group of FATF on its anti money laundering and terror financing measures, former Sikh MPA Baldev Kumar’s allegations on Pakistan government of mistreating minorities and the alleged role of the Ahmadiyya community in Kashmir dispute. Op-eds discuss the US administration’s decision to expand its global terror list and alleged Talibanization of Punjab.

 Today’s News Stories

 APG to file report on Pakistan’s steps against terror financing

Based on Pakistan’s progress report, the Asia-Pacific Joint Group (APG) will submit next month its assessment of Islamabad’s progress on strengthening of its systems against money laundering and terror financing. “The Pakistan delegation effectively presented Pakistan’s progress on each of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Action Plan items and provided additional information/clarification to the AP-Joint Group,” said a brief statement issued by the Ministry of Finance after two-day face-to-face meetings with the APG in Bangkok. It said the APG, as per the FATF’s procedures, would present its report in the FATF Plenary and Working Group meetings scheduled for October 13-18 in Paris, France.

Read more in Dawn, The News, Express Tribune, The Nation

Former Sikh MPA’s family disputes his minorities mistreatment allegation

Former Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) lawmaker Baldev Kumar is seeking political asylum in India and has accused Pakistan government of mistreating minorities. Mr Kumar was arrested in the murder case of Soran Singh, the then special adviser to the chief minister, on April 22, 2016. He was finally acquitted by an anti-terrorism court in Buner in April 2018. Mr Kumar’s family have rejected the allegations made by him in the Indian media that religious minorities were mistreated in Pakistan. The Indian media have reported that Baldev Kumar had come to India on a visa along with his family has applied for political asylum citing discrimination against religious minorities in Pakistan as the prime reason.

Read more in Dawn, The News, The Nation

Qadianis resist resolution of Kashmir dispute: Khatam-e-Nabuwat Conference

The All Pakistan Lawyers Forum (APLF) organized a Khatam-e-Nabuwat Conference at Chiniot yesterday. Speaking at the conference, APLF leader Malik Rab Nawaz Advocate said that the Qadianis (Ahmadi community) is silent over the Indian excesses in Kashmir and didn’t protest against India anywhere including Pakistan, India and Europe. He said Qadianis aren’t loyal with Pakistan but to their community alone. He said from Sir Zafarullah till today, Qadianis have assumed important positions in Pakistan and blocked resolution of the Kashmir dispute. He called for withdrawal of tax exemption for the Ahmadiyya community and immediate ban on it as well.

Read more in Daily Islam

Opinion

 Terror list

This editorial in The News comments on US administration’s decision to expand the global terror list to include Tehreek Taliban Pakistan chief Noor Wali Mehsud and 10 others. It says the decision came after the ongoing talks between Afghan Taliban and the US broke down unexpectedly. The News opines that the inclusion of Noor Wali Mehsud on the terror list will place additional pressures on Pakistan. As per the editorial, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said that the new decision adds muscle to the US’s counterterrorism plan under its provisions. It says it remains to be seen whether Pakistan, which was tasked to facilitate Afghan talks, will come under any pressure to deal with Taliban factions including those under Noor Wali Mehsud.

Read more in The News

Playing foul with the Quaid

In his opinion piece for Daily Times, Wajid Shamsul Hasan sheds light on how Pakistan has strayed from the path set by its founding father Quaid Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. All sorts of fears and apprehensions shroud Pakistan’s future on the death anniversary of its founder Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, he writes. He finds it is regretful that whatever its founding father Muhammad Ali Jinnah wanted Pakistan to be, it has been further waylaid. He says instead of moving on the agenda of establishing egalitarian, liberal, progressive and secular Pakistan, there seems to be a deliberate design to unleash myopic forces of bigotry as manifested in the freedom enjoyed by the bigoted mullahs. Mainstreaming of terrorists is yet another sinister name of the game, a multi-faceted exercise in deception, he adds.

Read more in Daily Times

Talibanization of Punjab

Muzammil Suherwardy highlights the regressive steps being taken by government institutions, which may lead to radicalization of the society. He says on one hand the government is taking steps to promote tourism and economic development but on the other hand regressive measures such as gender segregation at educational institutions, raids and clampdown on drinking and regulation of women’s dresses are the order of the day. He says such retrogressive steps reek of Taliban mentality. He says Punjab police is smelling people’s mouths to detect liquor consumption and checking marriage certificates of dating couples. He says such outdated mentality will lead us nowhere. It is high time we shun moral policing in the country.

Read more in Daily Express

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