Committee answerable for non-inclusion of Sharifs’ names on ECL: Nisar

ISLAMABAD: In response to a question over non-inclusion of Sharif family members’ name on no-fly list, Former Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Friday said the interior ministry’s committee is answerable for decisions on recommendations for including names on the Exit Control List (ECL).

Speaking at the floor of National Assembly, the estranged PML-N leader said “if” a decision to not include the names of Sharif family members on the list has been finalized, it must have been made somewhere else.

He was making a response to PPP lawmaker Syed Naveed Qamar’s question about delay on National Accountability Bureau (NAB) recommendations about placing Sharifs on the Exit Control List (ECL).

On February 14, the anti-graft body had written a letter to the interior ministry to place former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Captain (retd) Muhammad Safdar.

Nisar went on saying that he had changed the policy of placing names on the ECL and minimized the role of ministry during his tenure as Interior Minister.

“A committee under the ministry was assigned with the task to deal with requests to place the names on the ECL during my tenure,” he said.

He further said the committee was free to take decisions on merit during his tenure, besides the NAB recommendations were always taken seriously.

On the occasion, Nisar wondered about the double standard of placing names on no-fly list.


PML-N(Ch Nisar) may win the NA-53 seat: IPOR Survey

NGO survey termed PML-N in winning edge for National assembly seat from Taxila

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TAXILA: A survey conducted by an NGO Institute for Public Opinion Research (IPOR) carried out survey in the Taxila and Wah Cantt national assembly constituency of NA 53 Rawalpindi-IV to gauge the trends of constituency in upcoming general elections.

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According to NGO, the survey was conducted from February 27-28,2018 with sample of 598 scientifically selected respondents with Margin of Error ±4%. 49% Male and 51% Female voters were interviewed. According to NGO, as per this survey majority 41% of the respondents said that they will vote for PMLN, while 37% said they will vote for PTI, only 2% said that they will vote for PPP in 2018 General Elections. The respondents identified sewerage as the biggest issue of the constituency.

According to IPOR when people were asked If Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan contest election from NA-53 seat as an independent candidate would you vote for him? The majority 57% of the respondents said yes, they will vote for him. When asked If PML-N award ticket to someone else other than Ch Nisar Ali Khan would you vote for PML-N candidate? The majority 56% of the respondents said that they will not vote for PMLN candidate.

3.JPGMoreover, when people of the constituency were asked how do you see the performance of your current MNA  who belongs to PTI Ghulam Sarwar Khan? The 13% of the respondents said good, while 42% of the respondents said somewhat ok. When masses were asked that which party asked contacted you for the vote the majority 90% of the respondents said that so far no any political party contacted them for the vote.

100 employees of new hospital without salaries

TAXILA: Around 100 employees, including doctors, paramedical and administrative staff, of the newly-established Wah General Hospital are without salaries for three months.

Sources said around 100 employees, including 26 specialist doctors and 35 nurses, were hired for the hospital in December 2017. However, the hospital has not been formally opened, said the sources.

The employees have been attending their workplace but without patients as well as salaries.

The doctors, paramedical staff visit the hospital just to mark their attendance. Most of the employees have been appointed on contractual basis and have no other major source of earning, said an employee who wished not to be named.

He said the matter had been brought into the notice of the deputy district officer health Taxila and the chief executive officer health Rawalpindi who attributed the delay in the payment of the salaries to non-release of funds by the finance department, Lahore.

When contacted, Chief Executive Officer Health Dr Sohail Chaudhry said the matter was in the notice of the health and district administration. It was also discussed at a recent meeting held at the office of the deputy commissioner Rawalpindi, he said.

About the opening of the hospital, the official said he was not aware of the schedule as only officials at the provincial capital could take a decision about it. However, he said the hospital was fully equipped and ready and specialist doctors available for treating patients.

Man gets 6-year jail term, Rs1.7m fine for harassing woman online

A magistrate in Lahore sentenced a man to six years in prison on Friday and imposed a fine of Rs0.7 million for harassing and blackmailing a woman online,  Media reported.

The convict has also been order to pay Rs1 million in compensation to the victim — the wife of a Pakistan Air Force officer living in Bahawalpur’s Ahmedpur Sharqia.

Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Special Magistrate Imtiaz Ali Bajwa sentenced one Usman Bin Masood ─ arrested in 2017 ─ under Sections 20 (offences against dignity), 21 (offences against modesty) and 24 (cyber stalking) of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (PECA) 2016.

Masood was convicted for cyber offences which included digitally manipulating the victim’s photos, and subsequently harassing and blackmailing her on social media.

A case was registered against the convict on the complaint of the air force officer after Masood had threatened to share his wife’s doctored photos on Facebook.

Surcharges on power tariffs to continue

ISLAMABAD: The federal government has decided to continue with about an average of Rs2.35 per unit surcharges on electricity imposed in 2014 on all the electricity consumers.

The Ministry of Energy has made a formal request to the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) to allow three surcharges to continue in consumer tariff to ensure flow of more than Rs100 billion funds to meet debt servicing obligations of the power sector, subsidy to poor consumers to ensure countrywide uniform rate and investments required for expansion of power sector.

The three surcharges — tariff rationalisation surcharge, financing cost surcharge and Neelum-Jhelum surcharge — would not increase consumer tariff from the current level but would deprive them of a tariff reduction.

Rs100bn needed to meet debt service obligations

The financing cost and NJ surcharges would remain flat at 43 paisa and 10 paisa per unit, respectively, for all consumers while the tariff rationalisation surcharge, with an average of Rs1.82 per unit, would vary for each consumer category and distribution company based on system losses and other inefficiencies.

The surcharges were imposed by the government in March-April 2014 when the regulator determined reduction in tariff for all distribution companies by an average of Rs2.35 to 2.50 per unit. The surcharges faced legal challenges in courts but finally the regulator agreed to make them part of the tariff at the time.

Now, the government has sought the continuation of these surcharges as part of “re-determinations of tariff for Discos for the 2015-16” to block some discounts to the consumers.

Also, the regulator had held suo motu proceedings regarding periodical adjustments on account of power purchase price (including impact of T&D losses on monthly fuel cost adjustment) and prior year adjustment pertaining to the 2016-17.

In response, the government has filed a request under section 31 of the Act for inclusion of subsidy/surcharges in the schedule of tariff and desired that the regulator should reflect certain amounts of subsidy/surcharges for certain categories of consumers.

“Further, the federal government in exercise of its powers under section 31 (5) of Nepra Act 1997, has decided to impose the following surcharges,” Nepra said in a public notice.

This included Neelum-Jhelum surcharge imposed in 2008 that should be continued until June 2018 at the rate of 10 paisa per unit on all electricity consumers of Discos except lifeline domestic consumers.

The Neelum-Jhelum surcharge is collected, for the purposes of meeting a portion of the cost of construction of 969MW Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Project. Collection of this surcharge shall be deposited by the Discos in the “Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Project Fund”.

A surcharge at the rate of Rs0.43 per kWh on account of recovering the debt servicing applicable to all the consumer categories on per unit consumption except lifeline domestic consumers. This shall be considered as a cost incurred by the distribution company to be included in the tariff recommended by the regulator.

The financing cost surcharge shall enable smooth working and running of the power sector and to meet the repayment obligations of mark-up cost of loans obtained against the sovereign guarantees of the Government of Pakistan for the purpose of reducing shortfall in payment of determined and verified costs of power generation of various power generators.

The collection of the financing cost surcharge shall be deposited in “Financing Cost Fund” to be kept in the Escrow Account of the Central Power Purchasing Agency Guarantee Ltd for exclusive use for discharging the liabilities of the power producers.

The third surcharge namely “tariff Rationalization Surcharge” at the rate mentioned against each of the categories of electricity consumers in respect of each unit of electric power sold by the specified DISCO during each of the billing month shall be considered as a cost incurred by the distribution company to be included in the tariff.

This is to enable fulfilment of the parameters set in the power policy to achieve objectives like the socio economic objectives, the budgetary targets in field, protection of low end consumer from price escalation through provisions of subsidy and maintaining uniform tariff across the country.

The collection of the this surcharge shall be deposited by the companies in “Tariff Rationalisation Fund” to be kept in the Escrow Account of the Central Power Purchasing Agency Guarantee Ltd for exclusive use for discharging the liabilities of the power producers.