Mian Manzoor Ahmed Wattoo congratulates Arshad Ansari on his election as President of Lahore Press Club

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Mian manzoor Ahmed Wattoo extended on behalf of PPP and on his behalf heartiest congratulations to Arshad Ansari for his election as President of Press Club Lahore eighth time.

He added that his election as the President of the biggest Press Club of the country was the manifestation of his popularity among the journalists of Lahore.

He appreciated his efforts for providing residential, medical and insurance facilities to the journalist community of Lahore.

The contributions of Lahore Press Club for the cause of freedom of press under his leadership were second to none and indeed were worth mentioning.

He recalled that the PPP and the journalist community had launched joint struggle for the freedom of Press because PPP considered freedom of press and democracy as inseparable.

میاں منظور احمد وٹو صدر پیپلز پارٹی پنجاب نے ارشد انصاری کو پیپلز پارٹی اور اپنی طرف سے آٹھویں مرتبہ لاہور پریس کلب کا صدر منتخب ہونے پر مبارکباد دی ہے۔ انہوں نے مزید کہا کہ ان کا ملک کی سب سے بڑی پریس کلب کا صدر منتخب ہونا انکی صحافی برادری میں مقبولیت کا منہ بولتا ثبوت ہے۔ انہوں نے کہا کہ انہوں نے بحیثیت صدر پریس کلب صحافیوں کی فلاح وبہبود کے لیے بے شمار کام کروائے جن میں صحافیوں کے لیے رہائشی سہولیات، انشورنس اور طبی سہولتوں کی فراہمی خاص طور پر شامل ہے۔ اسکے علاوہ پریس کلب لاہور نے آزادی صحافت کے لیے قابل قدر خدمات سرانجام دی ہیں جو کہ اس ادارے کی تاریخ کا شاندار باب ہے۔ انہوں نے کہاکہ پیپلز پارٹی نے ہمیشہ آزادی صحافت کے لیے صحافی برادری سے مل کر مشترکہ جدوجہد کی ہے کیونکہ پیپلز پارٹی جمہوریت اور آزادی صحافت کو لازم وملزوم سمجھتی ہے۔

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Shaheed Benazir Bhutto’s 7th martyrdom anniversary observed in all districts of Punjab

The 7th death anniversary of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto was observed in all districts of Punjab with great reverence on 27th December 2014. Districts Party leadership and workers paid rich tributes to their martyred leaders for her services to the country and party that led to her ultimate martyrdom.
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Punjab Chapter’s Function:

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The main function is held at the PPP Secretariat in Model Town, party’s Punjab chapter president Manzoor Wattoo said extremism and terrorism had to be defeated because other options would prove an exercise in futility.

He said the nation was united to eliminate terrorists from its soil as the extremists could not be allowed to impose “toxic ideology” at gunpoint.

“The present rulers had good contacts with extremists and their patrons and won the elections with their support,” Wattoo said.

He said the Peshawar tragedy was the most heinous crime of the same mindset that assassinated Benazir Bhutto. He said some leaders had been doing politics while sitting in foreign countries but BB did the politics for the poor.

He recalled that Zulfikar Ali Bhutto gave the Constitution that empowered the people with the right to vote. The PPP government had restored the 1973 Constitution through the 18th Amendment, which was mutilated by the successive dictators just to perpetuate their rule.

PPP Secretary-General Latif Khosa said the PPP was the victim of “delayed law” because the presidential reference of ZA Bhutto and the case of Benazir had not been taken up by courts despite a lapse of many years.

Azizur Rehman Chan said the assassination of Benazir and the Peshawar tragedy were the crimes committed by the same mindset.

Jehan Ara Wattoo, head S media Punjab said that now the supporters of sit-ins saw sense in taking the terrorists head-on.
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The PPP leaders and workers also held a candlelit vigil as an expression of respect for Benazir and the victims of Peshawar tragedy. They also held Quran Khwani for the departed souls.

Lahore Chapter’s Function:

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Lahore Chapter organised a seminar at Aiwan-e-Iqbal to pay tribute to the late Benazir Bhutto. The seminar was addressed by PPP central leader and opposition leader in Senate Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahmed, Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo, president Punjab, Samina Khalid Gurki, president Lahore, Prof Mahdi Hassan, Zahid Zulifqar Khan, Fazalur Rehman Butt, Ch Ghulam Mustafa, Saddique Azhar and Dr Khalid Jaan.
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Speaking on this occasion, Aitzaz Ahsan said that Pakistan People’s Party was itself the biggest victim of terrorism in the country, as the terrorist martyred Benazir Bhutto, bringing down a great minaret of politics in Pakistan.

Samina Ghurki said the day was troublesome for all diehard workers and all democracy-loving Pakistanis because their beloved leader separated form them on the same day seven year ago, but she was still with them even after her martyrdom.

She said that the PPP was all united and Bilawal Bhutto was furthering the mission of his mother and grandfather.

Prof Dr Mehdi Hassan said that as many 11 Jiyalas (diehard workers) had given their life in protest when ZA Bhutto was hanged. “The party doesn’t build up on the basis of slogans but on the basis of welfare work and practical contributions.”

Lahore Division Rural:

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Islamabad Chapter’s Function:

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) will keep alive the vision of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto for the progress and development of the country. “We will leave no stone unturned for the development of the country, as per the vision of BB Shaheed,” said President PPP’s Islamabad city Faisal Sakhi Butt, at a ceremony held to offer prayers on the 7th death anniversary of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto.
PPP’s Islamabad chapter leaders Akhtar Ali Khan, Sahibzada Zulfiqar, Sheikh Hameed and other attended the ceremony, which was held at F-8 Markaz. They paid tributes to their slain leader and also prayed for the eternal souls of the victims of Peshawar tragedy as a token of solidarity with the bereaved families.
“Both PPP’s leader Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and his daughter Benazir Bhutto sacrificed their lives but never compromised on sovereignty and independence of the country,” he said.
“Former PM Benazir Bhutto had started a large number of development and welfare programmes for the people of this country,” he said, adding that her services would always be remembered.
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Rawalpindi Chapter’s Function:

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Activists and workers of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Rawalpindi chapter, on Saturday paid glowing tributes to the former prime minister, Benazir Bhutto for her services to the cause of democracy in the country.
On the occasion of former PPP chairperson’s 7th death anniversary, party’s district leadership demanded of the government to investigate Bhutto’s assassination under the new ‘National Action Plan’, adding that would strengthen the efforts being taken to combat the menace of terrorism.
“What our brave leader predicted has proven true. Those who were terming Taliban as their brothers are now appealing for help to fight Taliban’s barbarism,” said PPP Divisional Coordinator Raja Imran Ashraf, while talking to The Express Tribune.
He said that Bhutto was assassinated under a well-planned conspiracy that had yet to be uncovered.
“We want to see the ugly faces of her killers just to tell them that she is still alive and her mission is being carried on by thousands of her supporters,” Ashraf said.
Addressing the participants of the rally, PPP leader Zamarud Khan said that Benazir was alive in the hearts and the minds of the people.
“She was a leader of international stature who laid down her life for the supremacy of the constitution and democracy in Pakistan,” he said.
Khan said the day Bhutto was assassinated, was the darkest in the history of the country.
“If Bhutto was alive, Pakistan would have joined the league of developed countries,” he said.
Khan said they would pursue the mission of Benazir Bhutto till their last breath and would never succumb to the pressure of the anti-democratic forces that wanted to destroy the institutions of the country.
“She inherited an ideology of sacrifices for the cause of democracy, serving the downtrodden and of [struggling for the] supremacy of constitution. Neither dictatorship nor weapons can kill this ideology,” said former MNA Haji Gulzar Muhammad Awan.
The rally ended with prayers for Bhutto.
Meanwhile, members of PPP labour and women and youth wings as well as doctors’ and lawyers’ forums reached Liaquat Bagh where Bhutto was assassinated on December 27, 2007 to homage to their leader.
Earlier, rallies from various cities and union councils including Taxila, Gujjar Khan, Murree, Jehlum, Attock and Chakwal started reaching the garrison city since morning.
The activists visited the memorial site at Liaquat Bagh.
Moreover, special congregations were also organised by local chapters of the party throughout the district in memory of the former prime minister.

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Sahiwal Division’s Activities:

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Paying tribute to Shaheed Benazir Bhutto for sacrificing her life to restore democracy in the country, many workers lit clay lamps, using their own blood as fuel.

Many workers lit earthen-lamps with their blood to pay homage to Shaheed Benazir Bhutto.
Many workers lit earthen-lamps with their blood to pay homage to Shaheed Benazir Bhutto.

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 Ch. Anwar Sangoka Ex-city Nazim addressing to the participants in a function organized by PSF to pay tribute to Shaheed Benazir Bhutto.
PSF organized a special ceremony to pay tribute to Shaheed Benazir Bhutto.

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PSF Okara organized a function at Gole Chowk Okara to pay a rich tribute to Shaheed Benazir Bhutto

Sahiwal Chapter’s Function:

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Pakpatan Chapter’s activities:

The PPP Pakpatan chapter observed 7th martyrdom anniversary of former prime minister Shaheed Benazir Bhutto with great reverence, fervour and solemnity.

PPP jiyalas in the city also arranged a motorcycle rally as well as paid tribute through candlelight vigil.

The participants of the rally also hoisted PPP flags and portraits of the party leadership, especially of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto and, Former President Asif Ali Zardari and Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari.

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Gujranwala Division’s Function:

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The seventh Martyrdom anniversary of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto was observed in Gujranwala.

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Gujranwal District:

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Sialkot Chapter’s Function:

The seventh Martyrdom anniversary of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto was observed in Sialkot.
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Hafizabad:

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Faisalabad Division Activities:

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Sargodha Division Activities:

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Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo has saluted the workers for observing Martyrdom Day of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto

Mian Manzoor Wattoo saluted the workers and office bearers of the PPP workers for observing the martyrdom day of Mohtrama Benazir Bhutto yesterday in Lahore and at all the district headquarters in which rich tributes were paid to their beloved leader. The occasion was synonymous with rare manifestation of the highest esteem the workers held their beloved leader who sacrificed her life for the cause of democracy and rights of the poor people.

He said that the occasion was marked with the expression of solidarity with the families of the Peshawar victims and also prayed for the eternal peace for the departed souls.

Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo felicitates newly elected office bearers of Lahore Press Club

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Pakistan Peoples Party Punjab President Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo has felicitated newly-elected President of Lahore Press Club Arshad Ansari, Vice President Nadeem Basra, Secretary Afzal Talib, Finance Secretary Shadab Riaz, Joint Secretary Saima Nawaz and members of the governing body on their victory in the elections of Lahore Press Club.

In his message Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo has expressed hope that Arshad Ansari along with other newly elected office bearers would play a leading role role in solving the problem of journalist community and Lahore press club would continue to support the democratic process.

He maintained that democracy is incomplete in the absence of an independent media and we could not imagine about a democratic system without an independent and vibrant media.

“The PPP and its leadership believed in free media and always stand with its freedom and independence.”, he added.

PPP senators oppose military courts

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ISLAMABAD – It looks that consensus developed among the parliamentary parties after Peshawar carnage has started fading, as PPP in the Upper House of the Parliament Tuesday for the second consecutive day opposed the establishment of military courts and said that army should not be made controversial with this decision.
Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) also demanded that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif himself should today (Wednesday) conclude the ongoing debate on Peshawar carnage in the house what its lawmakers said that neither Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan nor Prime Minister Sharif had come for a single time after December 16 school attack incident that was being debated in the house. They said that with such actions, the government was not looking serious to end terrorism in the country.
The opposition lawmakers showed their suspicions over the implementation of National Action Plan (NAP) on Counterterrorism and said that the actions of the government were not looking visible in this connection, as it was busy only forming committees. They said that the government should lead the whole terrorism operations and the army should not be made controversial through the formation of military courts.
PPP Senator Saeed Ghani taking part in the debate on terrorist attack on school in Peshawar remarked that an atmosphere was needed to be created against terrorism. In his emotional speech, he deplored that the government had failed to create such an atmosphere. He came down hard on the government saying it did not look serious to handle the menace of terrorism. He opposed the establishment of military courts and said, “I personally think the decision to establish military courts was not correct though the leadership of my party has supported it.” He quoted remarks of Senator Barrister Farogh Naseem that only terrorists of banned organisations would be tried in military courts and questioned who would decide about this link. He said that military court alone could not eradicate terrorism and added that the army should not be made controversial. “If army becomes controversial, how it would chase the terrorists,” he said. He said that Pakistan Army was being seen with suspicions after the announcement of military courts and objections were being raised on such courts.
Khalida Perveen of PPP said that military courts were not at all exact treatment of terrorism, saying suicide bombers could not be threatened with such measures. She proposed to empower National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) and sought why Protection of Pakistan Act was not being used to end terrorism. “The implementation is necessary at all levels,” she added. She said that civilian institutions should do their work instead of military courts and the surviving children of Army Public School should be rehabilitated under a programme.
Robina Khalid of PPP said that the incident was a collective failure. “The government is late in implementing the decisions made soon after December 16 incident and now sympathisers (of terrorists) could be heard with dissident voices,” she said. She stressed that the government should at least ban unregistered SIMs, being used in terrorism incidents, and remarked in a humorous way what consensus needed for this purpose.
PPP legislator Mukhtair Ahmed Damrah also opposed military courts and said when Parliament, provincial assemblies and courts were there, then what was the necessity of military courts. “These were the military courts that hanged Zulfikar Ali Bhutto,” he said. “Don’t make the army controversial if your are not serious to solve the issue,” he asked the government. He said that civil courts should be reactivated and the government would have to lead this war.
He focused his speech on the past events and said that at least three parties were not allowed to participate in election campaign during 2013 general polls by terrorist organisations. He criticised that the government should fight its own war and did not use the shoulders of other institutions for this purpose. He said the PML-N had earlier refused the presence of Punjabi Taliban in the past but later it revealed that it had been monitoring different terrorism operations.
“The government is lacking its will to end terrorism,” he said, adding that the terrorists were being given time to move from one place to another through late actions of the government.
Senator Sardar Ali Khan said that US imposed war on terror on Pakistan and efforts were being made to target nuclear capability. The government should give its policy for return of Afghan refugees. “The judiciary and the executive should do its work and there is no need of military courts,” he said.
Veteran PPP lawmaker Taj Haider said that it was unfair to say terrorists to come in his province and target others.
Earlier, Mian Raza Rabbani on a point of order said that the issue was so serious but neither Prime Minister nor Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan came in the House even for a single time after Peshawar incident. He demanded that PM should come and conclude the debate.
“Parliament is your strength if war on terror has to be taken to its logical end, it would have to be done through parliament,” he said. He also proposed for the formation of parliamentary oversight committee to see whether Nation Action Plan (NAP) was being implemented.
Leader of the Opposition in the Senate Aitzaz Ahsan said, “On one hand, the government is getting us forced to take sip of poison of military courts and on the other side it is not looking serious to implement consensus decisions.” He criticised the government saying that the PM had made 17 committees to oversee the implementation of NAP and surprisingly out of these interior minister was heading half of these committees. “We are not ready to hear Stat Minister for Interior Baleegur Rehman during the winding up debate of Peshawar incident,” he said. “The PM should come to wind up the debate and if he did not come then controversy would generate and at last interior minister should come to conclude the debate today,” he stressed. He said that the government was not looking serious to take action on 20 points of NAP but only busy forming committees. “NAP has been found napping,” he said.

PPP warns opposition parties against ‘intrigues’

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KARACHI: The opposition parties in the Sindh Assembly should be careful of elements that had always supported dictatorship and impeded the country’s progress and should keep in mind the sanctity of the ballot and mandate of the people.

The PPP senators — Saeed Ghani, Dr Karim Khawaja and Kulsoom Perveen — said this in a statement issued here regarding reports of ‘unification’ of parties on the opposition benches in the Sindh Assembly to “topple the government at the behest of authoritarian elements”.

They advised them to adopt only democratic and constitutional means.

They said that the masses and the PPP would support any step to be taken for strengthening the democracy, but they would oppose any ‘unconstitutional adventure’.

“Those conspiring to move a no-confidence motion in the Sindh assembly through unconstitutional means have simply ignored the onward repercussions of the move, which will encompass the entire political system at the national level.”

They said those who believed that the PPP would be in a weaker position should keep in mind that the PPP was no novice in parliamentary politics.

Hinting at certain political and religious parties in the province, the PPP senators said why they were tight-lipped at the arrest of Lyari gangster Uzair Jan Baloch with the assistance of Interpol, which was only made because the Sindh government wanted to bring him to book. They said those who always exploited certain situation for political mileage and criticised the Sindh government for being partisan were now silent.

The Sindh government had never been involved in acts of discrimination at any scale, they added.

“It is a known fact that certain religious and political parties have made efforts to patronise Lyari gangsters, including Uzair Jan Baloch, and broke their fast with him in the past Ramadan,” they claimed.

The PPP senators said that on the Timber Market tragedy certain political parties had started criticising the Sindh government only for gaining political mileage, but they were silent over the inferno at the Old Anarkali in Lahore, where precious lives were lost.

“Those criticising the Sindh government for lacking good governance should answer as to what action has been taken at the federal level against the power distribution companies that collected duty from consumers on behalf of the national exchequer, but did not deposit the sum of money to the national exchequer and were being ignored for their deliberate embezzlement of public money.”

The PPP senators asked the parties on opposition benches to show maturity in their approach and avoid becoming a toy in the hands of those playing game against the democracy and should work for strengthening of the democracy.

Published in Dawn, December 31st, 2014