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NSC session with top brass underway

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ISLAMABAD: An in-camera session of the National Assembly’s National Security Committee (NSC) is underway at the lower house, in which the military leadership is expected to brief the lawmakers on the country’s prevailing national security situation.

The session is being chaired by NA Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf.

According to sources, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir and Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Chief Lt Gen Nadeem Ahmed Anjum will give a detailed overview of the current situation to the members.

The development comes after a national security huddle — headed by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif — decided last week to launch fresh military operation to flush out rising militancy in the country.

Notices have been issued by the National Assembly Secretariat and all federal ministers, advisers and MNAs have been invited to attend the meeting.

Secretaries of interior, foreign affairs, finance, defence and information and broadcasting have also been invited to attend the meeting while the four provincial chief ministers, chief secretaries and IGPs were issued special invitations by the NA Secretariat.

‘Healthy interaction’

On Thursday, Prime Minister Shehbaz announced that the National Assembly would be given an in-camera briefing on national security matters on Friday (today).

Responding to a point raised by MNA Ali Wazir from Waziristan, PM Shehbaz informed the house that during the in-camera briefing, parliamentarians would also be able to put their respective questions on the relevant subject.

He assured the MNA that all of his reservations would be listened to and responded positively to satisfy his concerns.

“This would be a healthy interaction. There would be no discussion to spoil the situation, rather it would be an attempt to rectify the matters,” the prime minister remarked.

Speaking on the occasion, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif had said the military leadership would attend the National Assembly session and respond to the queries of the members. He further added that the military leadership was cognisant of the challenge posed by terrorism.

He voiced serious concerns over the surge in terrorism and demanded that terrorists’ facilitators settled in the civilian areas must be held accountable.

Asif, who recently visited Kabul along with DG ISI to convey Pakistan’s concerns on the TTP activities, said terrorism increased after people from Afghanistan settled in Pakistan.

“Terrorists have settled in the residential areas. Action should be taken against the people who have helped them settle,” he said while referring to the previous Imran Khan-led government.

“These people have political support, as they are also present at Zaman Park. They have the support of Khan,” he said.

The defence minister added that the first Afghan war took place during the reign of General Zia, while the second war happened during the rule of General (retd) Musharraf after 9/11.

He seconded MNA Mohsin Dawar and Ali Wazir and said they were correctly saying that the people in those areas were suffering for the sins they did not commit.

Speaking on a point of order, Ali Wazir appealed to the government to stop the military operation in the tribal areas. He said another operation in the tribal areas had been discussed in the NSC huddle.

“We have come to know that even the GHQ has not been taken into confidence and the generals who had retired should be dealt with first,’” he said.

He said the people who spread mistrust had now come to the settled areas of the country.

“When the Taliban came to Afghanistan, sweets were distributed in the country, as Pakistan had problems and differences with the past Afghan rulers,” he recalled.

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The IHC upholds Bushra Bibi’s request to be transferred from Bani Gala to Adiala Jail.

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Bushra Bibi’s request to be transferred from Bani Gala to Adiala Jail was granted by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday.

The former first lady Bushra Bibi’s application to be transferred from Bani Gala sub-jail to Adiala was heard today.

Details reveal that the Islamabad High Court heard a motion to restore the denied petition about the relocation of Bushra Bibi, the wife of PTI founder, from sub-jail Bani Gala to Adiala.

The application for the reinstatement of appeal was heard by Justice Miagul Hassan Aurangzeb. When state attorney Abdul Rehman entered the courtroom on behalf of the state, Usman Riaz Gill represented the former first lady.

State counsel did not object to the appeal being restored during court proceedings. At the following hearing, the court asked for assistance in determining what conditions must be met for a location to be designated as a sub-jail.

The court also mandated that Bushra Bibi’s medical examination be scheduled. The court subsequently delayed the hearing and gave instructions to fix the appeal for April 22.

Recall that the attorneys for former first lady Bushra Bibi, Barrister Salman Safdar, Usman Riaz Gill, and Khalid Yusuf Chaudhary, had filed an application to restore the dismissed appeal a day ago, but the Islamabad High Court had denied their request to pursue the case.

The petition contended that the traffic gridlock at the Sarina Chowk checkpoint was the reason for the delay in getting to the court.

The attorneys did not purposefully take their time getting to court. They warned that the petitioner would suffer irreversible loss if the petition was not resurrected.

IHC Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb has voiced his displeasure at the absence of attorneys from the court.

According to Judge Aurangzeb, the former first lady would have been imprisoned if Bushra Bibi’s attorneys had prevailed in this case. The attorneys themselves were opposed to Bushra Bibi’s incarceration.

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oath-taking ceremony for the Balochistan cabinet postponed

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The Balochistan cabinet’s oath-taking ceremony, which was supposed to take place at the Governor’s House today (Thursday), has been rescheduled.
The Governor’s House spokeswoman announced that the Balochistan cabinet’s swearing-in event has been postponed. Nevertheless, there was no explanation provided for the ceremony’s postponement.

It is important to note that the 14-member Balochistan cabinet, which consists of two members from the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) and six ministers from the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was set to take the oath of office today, Thursday.

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PMD forecasts rain throughout the majority of the nation.

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During the next 24 hours (Thursday–Friday), the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) has predicted rain, windstorms, thunderstorms, and a few torrential downpours or hailstorms throughout the majority of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan, Kashmir, Islamabad, Punjab, and Balochistan.

In several areas of Sindh, a rain-windstorm/thunderstorm is anticipated. Much of Balochistan is being hit by a powerful westerly wave trough, which is expected to spread to the top regions by April 18.

Prolonged downpours have the potential to cause flash flooding in Balochistani local streams and drains, particularly in Gwadar, Jiwani, Pasni, Ormara, Kech, Awaran, Kharan, Panjgur, Washuk, Noshki, Lasbela, Khuzdar, and Kalat.

On April 18–20, heavy rains could cause flash floods in tributaries of the Kabul River as well as in Dir, Swat, Chitral, Kohistan, Manshera, Gilgit–Baltistan, Kashmir, and other areas.

Lower Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Murree, Galiyat, Kashmir, and Gilgit-Baltistan are among the regions where landslides may occur.

At this time, standing crops, power poles, cars, solar panels, and other objects may sustain damage from wind, hail, and lightning, according to meteorologists.

Upper Sindh and Balochistan saw rain, wind, and thunderstorms in the past 24 hours. During the era, there were also significant rainfalls in South Balochistan. Wednesday’s highs of 42 degrees Celsius in Mithi kept it as the country’s hottest spot.

Officials reported that lightning-related storm-related occurrences claimed the lives of at least 65 people in Pakistan, where the rate of precipitation in April has so far been roughly twice that of previous years. Floods and house collapses were caused by heavy downpours that occurred between Friday and Monday. Lightning claimed 28 lives.

32 people, including 15 children, have killed and over 1,300 homes have been damaged in northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which has suffered the greatest victim count.

The meteorological experts report that there is little probability of rain, despite the fact that drizzle fell in numerous areas of Karachi.

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