Islamists blame India for Bangladesh mutiny IANS

10 03 2009

Source: Express buzz

DHAKA: As agents of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation arrived here to help probe last week’s mutiny, rightwing Jamaat-e-Islami party Sunday accused India of being behind the killings inside the Bangladesh border guards’ headquarters.”The killing mission was executed from Indian intelligence headquarters through close monitoring,” Matiur Rahman Nizami, the chief of Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh, said while addressing a meeting of his party here.

India pulled a masterstroke by destroying the border guards and trying to weaken Bangladesh’s army and national security, he said, claiming that Indian media ran the news of the carnage citing Indian intelligence sources before the local television stations could cover it.

Some Indian media, quoting intelligence sources, earlier pointed the finger at Jamaat claiming the Islamist group sparked the mutiny in Bangladesh to divert attention from the prosecution of Jamaat-e-Islami members on trial for war crimes committed in the 1971 war of independence. Meanwhile, two agents of the FBI arrived here Sunday to help Bangladesh probe the mutiny that left dozens of army officers dead.

“They will sit with the home ministry officials Monday to agree on terms of reference for their operation in Bangladesh during the investigation,” a ministry official said.

The agents are expected to visit the crime scene and examine the evidence along with investigators from the Criminal Investigation Department of the police, he added.





Taliban terror forces Hindus to flee Pakistan

10 03 2009

Their forefathers made a choice 60 years ago and stayed back in Peshawar despite Partition. And today their unhappy descendants — a group of Hindu families — have been forced to flee by the rising influence of the fundamentalist Taliban.

“I think our forefathers committed a mistake by staying back in Peshawar during Partition and we are now correcting this mistake so that our coming generations will not suffer what we faced in Pakistan,” said Vijay Kumar from Peshawar in Pakistan. Our forefathers had committed a mistake by staying back during Partition. We’re correcting that mistake now. —Vijay Kumar, resident of Peshawar.

Kumar sold off his house and every household item he could, and left for India with his wife and children. They are part of a group of five families — 16 men, 16 women and three children — that reached Amritsar recently. They are seeking Indian citizenship.

The Taliban have won major successes recently and wrested crucial administrative concessions for themselves in the northwest frontier areas of Pakistan such as the Swat Valley. They are now closing in on one of the biggest urban centres in those parts, Peshawar.

Posters carrying the Taliban’s messages and rulings have begun popping up all over, and are specially disconcerting for these Hindu families in villages around Peshawar — directing men not to shave and women not to go to school.

“The Taliban are approaching Peshawar,” said Jagdish Sharma, a hakim (practitioner of local system of medicine) from Peshawar. “We’ve heard stories of molestation and cruelty against women there.”

Sharma sold a family business started by his forefathers and left with his family. “I don’t know what was the situation during Partition, but the present situation is so bad that no one can breathe with freedom. I don’t want to bring up my children in a war-like situation.”

And they are not going back now. Hardwari Lal, resident of Orkzai, about 180 km from Peshawar, said, “I was running a grocery shop which was forcibly taken over by the fundamentalists, who also captured all our property.”

Laxmi Narain simply went out of business because of the restrictions imposed by the Taliban. He ran a cosmetics store and got no customers after a while because women were forced to wear burqas — “demand nose-dived”. He sold his store and left.

But Narain is not bitter about it, only practical. “When law-enforcement agencies are feeling helpless, how can a common man feel secure? We are not blaming the government, but it’s just that terrorists are calling the shots now.”





Rebellion roar in Pakistan

10 03 2009

Source: Telegraph India

Islamabad, March 9 (PTI): Pakistan today warned former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif that his anti-government speeches amounted to sedition, shortly after he openly asked Pakistanis to rebel.
With the standoff between the government and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief showing no signs of easing, the army got the backing of former President Pervez Musharraf to deal with the crisis.
“If the country faced an internal threat to its integrity, it is the responsibility of the army to protect it,” Musharraf told reporters in Karachi shortly after returning from India. The former general said he would consider becoming President again if he could play a useful role in the post. “If I am offered the post of President and if I can be a useful President… then I will want to contribute to this country,” he said.
Sharif stepped up his offensive against President Zardari ahead of protests by his supporters and lawyers. He asked policemen at a charged rally in Jhelum not to abide by any illegal and unconstitutional orders of the government. Sharif urged the people to take to the streets and get ready for a “revolution”.
The Asia Times Online website (www.atimes.com) said the army may be forced to intervene into the government’s affairs. It quoted army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani as asking Zardari to quickly end the standoff with Sharif by March 16.
After Sharif’s rallying cry, interior security minister Rehman Malik said in a televised news conference in Islamabad: “Inciting people for disobedience is sedition. … It could get life imprisonment and a fine.”
Malik said the government would not outlaw the march but said the protesters would not be allowed to rally in front of the parliament building or other downtown areas, as they are planning.
He suggested they protest in a park on the outskirts of the Islamabad.
The protesters have said the march will be peaceful, but that they will not leave streets close to the parliament until the judges are restored. Sharif’s supporters say that the judges were sacked as they had planned to take up cases that could weaken Zardari’s already shaky grip on power.
Referring to Sharif’s comments against the government after the supreme court banned Sharif and his brother and former Punjab chief minister Shabaz from contesting elections, Malik urged the former Prime Minister to hold talks with Zardari.
At a news conference in Karachi, Musharraf, who resigned as President in August last year to avoid impeachment by the Pakistan People’s Party-led government, said he had no plans to join any party.
“In the current environment, I have no intention of joining politics. Frankly, I haven’t given any serious thought to joining politics,” he said in response to a question.





Politicians let us down again: Pakistan media

10 03 2009

Source: NDTV
Tuesday, March 10, 2009, (Islamabad)

Is a military coup round the corner in Pakistan? As speculation of another military takeover grows, the media in Pakistan has warned the country’s politicians to slam on the brakes now and resolve their differences and put an end to the crisis.Arising out of the confrontation between the two mainstream parties, President Zardari’s PPP and Nawaz Sharif’s PML-N, the warning comes amid media reports that the army chief General Ashfaq Kayani has warned President Zardari to clean up the mess and that too by a deadline, March 16.

On that day, lawyers and supporters of Nawaz Sharif are planning a long march calling for the reinstatement of those judges who had been sacked by Musharraf, something Zardari has been reluctant to do.Pakistan’s The Daily Times said in its editorial, “Now that the two mainstream parties have virtually declared the doors of reconciliation shut, commentators are already talking of the possibility of the army stepping in “to bring the country back to normal”. We sincerely hope this doesn’t happen. The army is incapable of providing any political solutions as we have learnt from our bitter experience time and again. But if this does come to pass, this time too the politicians would be to blame”

Meanwhile, the Dawn’s editorial said, “Hurtling as this country is towards the brink of political chaos, there is still time for the politicians to slam on the brakes and reverse course. If not stopped immediately, the chain of events triggered by the ouster of the Sharif brothers from electoral politics and the imposition of governor’s rule in Punjab will surely end in tears for everyone involved.”And The News said, “All this is despicable. There are no other words to describe what we are seeing. Politicians have once more let down people in a terrible fashion. The tall talk of national unity in the face of crisis has proven to be nothing more than a lie. Are we really to believe our leaders are oblivious of the fact that their country faces extreme peril?”