Dialogue between spymasters is a good omen

Interestingly, the book ‘The Spy Chronicles: RAW, ISI and the Illusion of Peace’ was released just when the Supreme Court (SC) has resurrected the famous Asghar Khan case. It has been alleged in this case that General Asad Durrani, one of the authors and then ISI chief had distributed slush funds to politicians from various […]

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Clash of two narratives on national security

For the first time, the clash between the so far official national security narrative and civilian narrative has risen from Punjab. Punjab is the most powerful province of the country which represents 53 percent of the population and a huge chunk of the people in the military establishment. This contradiction between these two sides has […]

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Even the poorest indirectly pay taxes in Pakistan

There have been many attempts in the past to lure the taxpayers to whiten their money. One of the biggest attempts was made by Dr Mahbubul Haq by introducing the ‘whitener bond’, which had very little success. I am reminded of the meeting held by Dr Haq with Karachi’s businessmen at the State Bank building […]

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Where do we stand on Press Freedom Day?

Sadly, the state of freedom of expression in Pakistan has not improved in the last many years. The recent report of Reporters Without Borders has ranked Pakistan’s state of freedom of expression and tolerance at 139 out of 161 countries reviewed by this prestigious organisation. If there is any solace, India is ranked 138 in […]

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Demands for South Punjab

Once again, the Nawab of Bahawalpur Salahuddin Abbasi has raised the demand to create a separate Bahawalpur province in the run up to the 2018 elections. A parallel Janoobi Punjab Suba Mahaz (JPSM), led by a young MNA, Khusro Bakhtiar, has also been established by some of the MNAs and MPAs of the area. Interestingly, […]

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Amnesty Scheme

The much-awaited Amnesty Scheme for declaring local and foreign assets was announced too late by the PML-N government. Before going into the merit or demerit of the schemes presented by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi last week, the general feeling is that legally they are non-starters. These schemes were promulgated through presidential ordinances on Monday, […]

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Governing the ungovernable

Some thoughts on ‘Governing the Ungovernable’ Not many books are written on the political economy of Pakistan and that too by an eminent writer like Dr. Ishrat Husain, who brings with him the experience of heading the State Bank of Pakistan and also chairing the National Commission for Government Reforms on Reforming the Government in […]

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