Chairman Pof board lt.Gen Sadiq Ali presented souvenir to honorable Prime Minister of Pakistan Justice (R) Nasir ul mulk

Wah Cantt: Chairman Pof board lt Gen Sadiq Ali presented souvenir to the honorable Caretaker Prime Minister of Pakistan Justice (R) Nasir ul mulk during his visit to POF on 8th August 2018,Public Relation Officer POF Mr Zafar malik was also present.

HE PM Nasirul Mulk  lauded the role of Pakistan Ordnance Factories (POF) in fulfilling the country’s security needs and said that the defence industrial complex held a pivotal position in the wake of multifarious defence and security challenges the country was facing.

The prime minister made these remarks during a visit to the Pakistan Ordnance Factories, Wah Cantt.

Mr Mulk hailed the commitment and continued efforts of the workforce of POF whose labour and expertise he said had earned the organisation a reputable place in the region and beyond.

The prime minister was also briefed about commercial operations and corporate social responsibility services of the organisation in the field of education, health and environment protection.

 

 

Researchers find flaw in WhatsApp

PARIS: Researchers at an Israeli cybersecurity firm said on Wednesday they had found a flaw in WhatsApp that could allow hackers to modify and send fake messages in the popular social messaging app.

CheckPoint said the vulnerability gives a hacker the possibility “to intercept and manipulate messages sent by those in a group or private conversation” as well as “create and spread misinformation”.

Last month, the app announced limits of forwarding messages following threats by the Indian government to take action after more than 20 people were butchered by crazed mobs after being accused of child kidnapping and other crimes in viral messages circulated wildly on WhatsApp.

 

WhatsApp said in a statement: “We carefully reviewed this issue and it’s the equivalent of altering an email to make it look like something a person never wrote.”

However, WhatsApp said: “This claim has nothing to do with the security of end-to-end encryption, which ensures only the sender and recipient can read messages sent on WhatsApp.”

The app noted it recently placed a limit on forwarding content, added a label to forwarded messages, and made a series of changes to group chats in order to tackle the challenge of misinformation.

Indian actor Kamal Hassan is entering politics to fight for artistic freedom

Indian movie star Kamal Haasan, whose latest film releases Friday, enjoys causing a stir as an actor and now he is looking to shake up Indian politics as well.

Haasan is one of the biggest names in Indian cinema and has appeared in more than 200 films since making his debut aged six over half a century ago.

The 63-year-old, who has endured battles with censorship, recently formed his own political party and plans to fight for artistic freedoms that he says are being curbed.

“It’s happening all around the country and should be challenged. Every artist should assert his or her right to speak,” Haasan, from the southern state of Tamil Nadu, told AFP in an interview.

The multiple award-winning screen icon is the latest in a long line of Indian actors hoping to transform their popularity at the box office into votes at the ballot box.

Haasan launched Makkal Needhi Maiam in February, a political party based in Tamil Nadu that translates to “People’s Justice Centre” in the local language.

It will contest polls for the first time in India’s next general election, likely to be held in spring 2019 when Prime Minister Narendra Modi will seek a second term.

Critics have accused Modi’s right-wing Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party-led government of fuelling intolerance and giving a platform to anti-Muslim sentiment.

Haasan, whose films have had a political hue since the 1980s, said his party’s priorities will be to “defend freedom of speech, and maintain and safeguard the diversity and multi-religious quality of the nation”.

“My decision (to get into politics) was accelerated by what is going on in the country but especially in my state,” the actor said during the interview in Mumbai.

“I wanted to challenge the status quo. And I am not inventing this decorum of centrism. We had it, and I want to regain it.”

Haasan, who also produces, directs and sings in many of his movies has appeared in films across several Indian languages — Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Hindi — making him a truly nationwide star.

He has picked up a number of awards throughout a glittering career including the Padma Bhushan, India’s third-highest civilian honour, and was made a Chevalier of France’s Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.

Some of his most notable movies include “Vikram”, “Mahanadi” (The Great River), and “Nayakan” (The Hero).

Saudi-backed IsDB ready to help Imran-led govt with $4 billion loan

KARACHI: Pakistan plans to borrow more than $4 billion from the Saudi-backed Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) as part of its attempts to restore dangerously low stocks of foreign currency, reported The Financial Times on Thursday.

Two officials told the daily that the Jeddah-based bank had agreed to make a formal offer to lend Islamabad the money when Imran Khan took over as prime minister. They added that they expected Asad Umar — Mr Khan’s proposed finance minister — to accept the offer.

 

“The paperwork is all in place,” said one senior adviser in Islamabad. “The IsDB is waiting for the elected government to take charge before giving their approval,” the report quoted the official as saying.

The official added that the loan would not cover Pakistan’s expected financing gap of at least $25bn during this financial year but was “an important contribution”.

Speaking to reporters in Islamabad this week, Mr Umar had warned: “The situation is dire. We’ve got 10bn dollars of central bank reserves, [and] we’ve got somewhere between $8bn and $9bn in short-term liabilities, and therefore your net reserves are close to nothing.”

As per the newspaper report, officials have already drawn up plans to borrow up to $12bn from the International Monetary Fund — though such a bailout is likely to come with strings attached, such as a demand to see the details behind billions of dollars’ worth of Chinese loans.

Mr Umar, it added, was therefore exploring what other options remained open to him, of which the IsDB loan was one. Officials said the loan would be used mainly to pay for oil imports, with higher crude prices having contributed to the country’s problems.

One official at Pakistan’s central bank — who has been involved in negotiations with the IsDB — said the loan had the backing of the Saudi government, “which wants to play a part in rescuing Pakistan from its present crisis”.

Despite the promise of money from the IsDB, economists warn that Mr Khan’s government will still have to enact potentially unpopular spending cuts and tax rises to help repair the government’s balance sheet.

“The budget deficit shot up to about 7 per cent of gross domestic product during the last financial year,” Waqar Masood Khan, a former finance ministry official told FT. “Bringing that down to the target of 4 per cent is not going to be easy,” the report added, quoting the official.

Saeed Anwar’s 194 way better than my double century: Fakhar

KARACHI: Pakistan’s rising batting star Fakhar Zaman has emphatically declared that Saeed Anwar’s epic knock against India was a far better achievement than his own record-breaking double century during last month’s ODI series in Zimbabwe.

The affable Fakhar stole the limelight at the PCB’s Annual Cricket Awards ceremony, which was held in collaboration with Titans Autographs and Memorabilia, by paying glowing tribute to Saeed who scored a memorable 194 — a world record that stood for six years — from only 146 balls at Chennai in May 1997 during the Independence Cup clash which Pakistan won by 35 runs.

“There is no doubt in my mind that nobody can ever come close to matching that stupendous innings from Saeed bhai. It was a phenomenal achievement considering it came against India in sweltering conditions,” Fakhar said after receiving Rs2.5 million special award for the most outstanding performance during the ceremony held at a five-star hotel on Wednesday night.

“Records are there to be broken and centuries are scored every now and then but in my view there is no comparison between my innings [of 210 not out] in Bulawayo and the one played by Saeed bhai who I rate as one of the greatest one-day batsmen.”

Sarfraz earns Imtiaz Ahmed Spirit of Cricket honour at PCB awards

Saeed Anwar, a left-hander like Fakhar, scored 8,824 runs (averaging 45.52) and hit 20 centuries in 247 ODIs in a glittering 14-year career before retiring after the 2003 World Cup in South Africa. He also made 4,052 runs in 55 Tests with 11 hundreds after bagging a pair on debut against the West Indies at Faisalabad in November 1990.

PAKISTAN captain Sarfraz Ahmed speaks.—White Star
PAKISTAN captain Sarfraz Ahmed speaks.—White Star

Fakhar is the quickest to the 1,000-run landmark in all ODIs, getting to the milestone in only 18 matches.

Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed, who didn’t miss a single international fixture during the past year, bagged the coveted Imtiaz Ahmed ‘Spirit of Cricket’ award.

In a brief speech after receiving Rs1 million cash prize, Sarfraz held high hopes for Pakistan in a very busy season in the lead-up to next year’s ICC World Cup in England while lauding the contributions of his charges in ensuring Pakistan retain the top ranking in T20 Internationals.

Seamer Mohammad Abbas, who is currently away in England playing for Leicestershire in the County Championship, won the Test Player-of-the-Year prize for picking up 27 wickets in five matches, while Hasan Ali’s 33 victims fetched him the ODI Player-of-the-Year prize.

Babar Azam clinched the T20 Player-of-the-Year award for his tally of 489 runs in the shortest format. Pace-bowling all-rounder Faheem Ashraf won the Emerging Player prize.

In the women’s category, Gilgit-born Diana Baig earned the emerging player award with her Pakistan team-mates Sana Mir and Javeria Wadood Khan taking the ODI and T20 prizes, respectively.

While most of the awards were given on performance-based criteria, glaringly there were several dubious recipients on the night, while exposing the Pakistan Cricket Board’s credibility.

At least two of the award winners were far from merit. Asif Yaqoob, who only made his debut at the first-class level just a couple of seasons ago and already assigned to supervise more matches of the PSL 3 than Khalid Mahmood — widely rated among the best umpires in the country and one who has been officiating in top domestic competitions for 24 seasons now — was given the ‘Best Umpire’ award at the behest of Shakil Sheikh, the influential president of the Islamabad Cricket Association and a close aide of PCB chairman Najam Sethi.

The other choice was Azhar Hussain, who was awarded the best Scorer-of-the-Year despite being an average scorer while the credentials of several outstanding scorers, such as Arif Majeed Arif and Syed Imran Ali, were overlooked.

Other award winners were Mohammad Anees (best referee), Riaz Ahmed (best curator), Shan Masood (best batsman, domestic), Aizaz Cheema (best bowler, domestic), Kamran Akmal (best wicket-keeper, domestic), (Javeria Wadood Khan (best woman batter, domestic), Diana Baig (best woman bowler, domestic) and Sidra Nawaz (best woman wicket-keeper, domestic).

Special awards were also presented to Pakistan’s physical disability team skipper Nihar Alam, deaf and dumb cricketer Mohammad Naveed Qamar and blind player Amir Ishfaq.

Meanwhile, auction of several cricketing memorabilia was conducted on the sidelines of the awards’ ceremony which drew scant response from the overcrowded audience, judging by the prices the items on offer were bought for.

The proceedings of the auctioned memorabilia were donated to Shahid Afridi Foundation, the Edhi Foundation and Project-91.