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Citizens Should Not Spread Fake Threat Alerts | ISPR


The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) has appealed to the people not to spread fake threat alerts in the country.
The statement said that some people are spreading fake threat alerts on social media mentioning ISPR as their source while it did not issue such appeals.
The ISPR has appealed that citizens should not trust any fake news and confirm it at ispr.gov.pk, an official website of the ISPR.

Pakistan, China in Close Contact Over Marriage Scandal Allegedly Involving Chinese Nationals, Foreign Office


Islamabad, Pakistan | Ministry of Foreign Affairs Pakistan has responded to questions regarding media reports of law enforcement action on incidents involving Chinese and Pakistani nationals.
Foreign Office spokesperson, in a statement, stated that the relevant authorities from both governments were in close contact on this issue.
Government of China had offered all possible cooperation on the issue, which was highly appreciated. Both sides are closely coordinating their efforts. In this context, a Chinese team visited Pakistan recently and held meetings with our law enforcement officials, the spokesperson said.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Pakistan Missions in China are closely monitoring the situation and extending all possible assistance to Pakistani citizens who may have any complaints on the subject.
“We have noted the statement by the Chinese Embassy referring to an investigation by the Chinese Ministry of Public Security on the issue. According to this investigation, there is no forced prostitution or sale of human organs of Pakistani women who stay in China after marriage with Chinese nationals.”
In light of the aforementioned statement, it is essential to avoid sensationalization and report on sensitive matters only on the basis of established facts.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, all other relevant departments of the government and the concerned Chinese authorities will continue to coordinate on the matter to address the grievances of the affected individuals, bring the culprits to justice, and ensure that such incidents do not recur in the future.
The Spokesperson underlined that Pakistan and China are 'All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partner'. The friendship between the two countries enjoys strong public and institutional support in both countries.
Both sides remain committed to strengthening this abiding friendship and strategic partnership in all dimensions.

70 Countries Urge North Korea to Scrap Nuclear, Ballistic Weapons

Illustration via Anton Watman/Shutterstock.com

United Nations (AFP) | Seventy countries urged North Korea on Friday to scrap its nuclear weapons, ballistic missiles and related programs, decrying the "undiminished threat" posed to world peace.
Signatories included the United States and South Korea, as well as nations in Asia, Latin America, Africa, and Europe.
Russia and China, supporters of Pyongyang, did not sign the document drafted by France.
With two missile launches in a week, Pyongyang is walking a fine line between increasing pressure on the US and not derailing nuclear negotiations -- all while giving itself room to escalate, analysts say.
According to a diplomatic source, about 15 countries asked to sign on to the request for North Korean disarmament after the new missile firings.
The signatories "strongly deplore the grave and undiminished threat to regional and international peace and security posed by the ongoing nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles programmes that the Democratic People´s Republic of Korea (DPRK) has developed," the text said.
"We encourage the DPRK to avoid any provocation," it added. "We also call for the DPRK to continue discussions with the United States on denuclearization."
Pyongyang fired two short-range missiles Thursday following an earlier drill on Saturday. The North had not launched any since November 2017, shortly before leader Kim Jong Un embarked on diplomatic overtures.
Kim declared an end to the testing of nuclear weapons and long-range missiles during rapid rapprochement last year.

China Says NO Evidence of Pakistani Women Being Forced into Prostitution


Islamabad, Pakistan | Chinese Embassy in Pakistan has responded to media reports that several Chinese nationals were taken into custody for alleged fraud, forgery of documents, human trafficking, sale of organ and forcing Pakistani women into prostitution after contracting marriages.
The Federal Investigation Agency have launched a crackdown after Pakistani women reported that they were trapped into fake marriages by Chinese nationals. Over 20 Chinese and Pakistani agents have been taken into custody during raids from Lahore, Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, and Islamabad.
A statement issued by the embassy spokesman Friday said China’s position on the issue of transnational marriage is very clear, that is to protect legitimate marriages and combat crimes.
“If any organization or individual commits a crime in Pakistan under the banner of the cross-border marriage, China supports the Pakistani side to crack down on it according to Pakistani laws.”
The Ministry of Public Security of China sent a task force to Pakistan to carry out law enforcement cooperation with the Pakistani side, it said.
The spokesman further added that the Chinese government conducted an investigation into the claims but found no forced prostitution or sale of human organs for those Pakistani women who stay in China after marriage with Chinese.
“China will further strengthen cooperation with the law enforcement agencies in Pakistan, effectively combat crime, so as to protect the legitimate rights and interests of the two peoples, and jointly safeguard China-Pakistan friendly relations.”
“It is worth noting that several media reports have fabricated facts and spread rumors.”
The embassy in Pakistan had earlier clarified the rumors by issuing a statement on 13th April.
The spokesman urged media to seek truth from facts, be objective and fair.
“We hope the people of China and Pakistan do not believe the rumors. We will never allow a few criminals to undermine China-Pakistan friendship and hurt the friendly feelings between two peoples,” it concluded.

WhatsApp Will Soon Stop Working on Lots of Phones


New York, USA | WhatsApp has announced to end support for all versions of Windows Phone operating systems after December 31, 2019. 
In a blog post on Thursday, WhatsApp announced that Windows Phone users won't be able to use the instant messaging app on their devices beginning 1 January 2020. 
The mobile app had earlier ended support for Nokia Symbian S60, Nokia Series 40 operating system, BlackBerry OS and BlackBerry 10. WhatsApp, which discontinued support for Windows Phone 7 back at the end of 2016, noted in the post that it will stop working on old versions of Android (v2.3.7 and older) and iOS (iOS 7 and older) on February 1, 2020, as well.
It means that the company will not offer any product or security updates for the WhatsApp messenger app, in-line with its Lifecycle policy. Earlier, Microsoft had recommended that the users of Windows 10 Mobile should migrate to Android and iOS devices.
Meanwhile, WABetainfo has claimed that WhatsApp is working on Universal Windows Platform (UWP) behind the scenes. The platform will allow WhatsApp messenger to work across all Windows 10 devices, including Xbox One and its other mobile devices.
But according to WABetaInfo - a fan site that tests new WhatsApp features early, a Universal Windows Platform (UWP) app is under development which possibly will be available for both Windows Desktop and Windows Phone platforms. 

Marriage Fraud | 11 Chinese, Two Pakistanis Remanded to FIA Custody


Lahore, Pakistan (The News International) |  The court of a judicial magistrate on Thursday granted two-day physical remand of 11 Chinese nationals and two Pakistanis to the Federal Investigation Agency, allegedly involved in sex and organ trade.
The accused include Hongfa Yang, Chuanji Liu, Libing Liu, Bo Wang, Gongze He, Tiyanyi Liu, Feng XNU, Song Guoqlang, Liu and others. FIA officials produced the accused before the Magisterial Court of Aamir Raza and sought their physical remand to carry out investigations.
Meanwhile, the FIA issued a press release on Thursday, stating that the FIA started investigations on a complaint moved by Nazir Ahmad whose daughter was trafficked to China for commercial sex. It stated that Nazir Ahmad married her daughter to Chinese national Chan Yen Ming through a marriage agent. The agent told Nazir and his family that the Chinese would reside permanently in Pakistan but will spend a few months a year abroad with his wife. It was further informed that Chan Yen Ming is newly-converted to Islam and his new name is Musa. After some days of marriage, Ming took his wife to China. A few days later, Nazir’s daughter called her family to tell them that they had been defrauded. She said Ming is forcing her into prostitution and physically tortured her on her refusal.
The FIA claimed that the girl informed her family that some people in China are running a business of luring Pakistani women to China to force them into prostitution along with organ trade. After hearing her daughter, Nazir contacted the agent who had arranged the marriage. He was told to contact their boss Wei Lin Ping, alias David, in Islamabad. When Lin Ping was approached, he told Nazir he had paid Rs 2 million to the agent for the woman, and until he returns the money, his daughter would either have to engage in prostitution or sell her organs.
After meeting Lin Ping, Nazir approached the FIA and the FIA contacted the Pakistan High Commission in China and the woman was repatriated to Pakistan. After her return to Pakistan, she told the FIA about the racket and their whereabouts after which the FIA conducted raids in Lahore and arrested the 11 Chinese and locals.

Getting OR Renewing a Pakistani Passport | Requirements And Process


Here is the process you must undergo before getting your Pakistani passport.

The applicant will go through the following stages at the Regional Passport Office (RPO) for obtaining the Machine Readable Passport (MRP):
NOTE: Before arrival at the Regional Passport Office (RPO), Original Bank Challan receipt must be acquired from the authorised branches of the National Bank in Pakistan & relevant bank branches for Foreign Missions respectively, by depositing a Prescribed Passport Fee.

o The arrival of Applicant at Customer Service Counter. Process Flow Chart

o Token Counter + Capturing of Photograph

o Biometric Data Capture. (Finger Prints)

o Data Entry.

o Verification as per Office Record. (ECL/BL)

o Interview and Decision by Assistant Director.

o Passport Delivery Time (Collection of Passport).

Step 1 - Arrival of Applicant at Customer Service Counter

The applicant will approach the customer service counter at the Regional Passport Office.
The applicant will be guided about the process flow of the System for applying for the passport.
In case the applicant has all the requisite documents he/she will be guided to the Token Counter.
The separate passport will be issued to each and every applicant irrespective of age.

ALL SORTS OF ENDORSEMENTS INCLUDING NAMES OF CHILDREN IN PARENTS PASSPORTS IS Not-Allowed in the Machine Readable Passport.

Step 2 - Token Counter + Capturing of Photograph

The applicant will produce the original CNIC/Smart-Card/NICOP or Children Registration Certificate (CRC), in case of below 18 years of age, along with its copies and Bank Chalan Form.

The Camera operator will proceed with capturing of applicants photograph.

Token will be issued to the applicant.

Step 3 - Biometric Data Capture (Finger Prints)

The applicant after obtaining token will approach the Biometric Counter as soon as his token appears at Biometric Capturing Counter.
Data Entry Operator (DEO) at the Counter will capture his right thumb, right index finger, Left Thumb and Left index finger impressions.

Step 4 - Data Entry

The Applicant will move to the Data Entry Counters as soon as his token number appears on the Counter.
The Data Entry Operator will enter all the required data of the Applicant while the data entry screen will also be visible to the Applicant.
In case of any modification in data, the Applicant should guide by the Data Entry Operator accordingly. After the data entry is completed Data Entry Form will be printed by the operator and will be presented to the Applicant for verification.

The Applicant will verify all its contents by signing the form.
The applicant will be asked to collect a duplicate token from the data entry counter.

NOTE: ANY CHANGE IN THE DATA SHOULD BE POINTED OUT AT THIS STAGE. ONCE THE INFORMATION HAVE BEEN SAVED, FOR ANY MODIFICATION THE TOKEN WILL HAVE TO BE CANCELLED AND THE APPLICANT WILL HAVE TO GO THROUGH THE WHOLE PROCESS AGAIN. AFTER ALLOWING "GO AHEAD" THE DATA BY THE ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, NO CHANGE IN THE DATA WILL BE POSSIBLE.

Step 5 - Verification as per Office Record (ECL/BL)

The verification against office record will be carried out.
Verification against Exit Control List (ECL) and Black List (BL).
In case of slightest doubt about the National Status of the applicant the case may be referred to Special Branch/IB for confirmation of his National Status as a citizen of Pakistan or otherwise.

Step 6 - Interview & Decision by Assistant Director

Finally, the applicant will appear before Assistant Director when his token appears on AD counter along with all the original documents.
The Assistant Director will interview the Applicant and declare his verdict to the applicant whether his case is to be allowed go-ahead or overruled.
Assistant Director will defer the case of Applicant below 18 years of age and will handover the printed form to the applicant for attestation of his photograph from a Class 1 Govt. officer.
The attester will have to write his/her CNIC/Contact No. along with the official stamp on the form.
On production of data form (duly attested) the deferred Token will be allowed go-ahead.

Passport Delivery Time (Collection of Passport)

After successful completion of the above stages, the Applicant will be given:-
10 working days time to collect his/her passport; in case of normal passport.
04 working days time to collect his/her passport; in case of urgent passport.

NOTE: Passports dispatched from the Headquarters for delivery to the applicants within prescribed processing period could be tracked through SMS & Online Passport Tracking System, but to reach their destination i.e. respective Regional Passport Office (RPO) or Foreign Mission (FM) they may take some shipment time.

Note: This information has been copied from  digp.govt.pk. You can visit the website for further information.

Pak Women’s Trafficking to China | 14 more Chinese Held, Three Young Girls Recovered


Islamabad, Pakistan (Shakeel Anjum/The News International) | The Anti-Human Trafficking Cell of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), in a countrywide crackdown against the Chinese people involved in getting married with Pakistani girls fraudulently, arrested 14 Chinese natives from different areas of Rawalpindi and Islamabad.
The FIA recovered three young girls from the custody of the gangsters and arrested four members of the gang, FIA told The News on Wednesday.
Seven Chinese among them were overstaying and their visa had expired since long but they kept involved in illegal activities of fake marriages with Pakistani girls who were later smuggled to China for the sex trade.
The FIA sources said that widening the areas of the crackdown, the FIA have started raiding different major cities of the country including Karachi, Lahore, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi and Islamabad on the order of DG FIA Bashir Memon.
The FIA sources said that the DG FIA received information against the Chinese active in anti-social activities and directed the Anti-Human Smuggling Cell to search, investigate and arrest such gangsters. The sources said that the Pakistani gang members received Rs2,000,000 from the Chinese for arranging a young girl and fake marriage. The FIA have already arrested seven Chinese last day from a locality in Rawalpindi. The girls were smuggled to China for sex trade, the sources said and added the FIA had some evidence that the body parts of the girls, including kidneys, were removed to sell them out. Some 21 Chinese and their seven aides have been arrested in the last two days, sources said and added raids would continuously be conducted in different hideouts of the criminals.

Trudeau Declines to Say If Asia Bibi in Canada Due to "Security Issues"


Ottawa, Canada (AFP) | Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declined Wednesday to confirm whether Asia Bibi, the Christian woman at the center of a decade-long blasphemy row in Pakistan, has arrived in Canada.
"There are sensitive privacy issues and security issues on this and so I can’t comment," Trudeau told reporters outside parliament after Bibi’s lawyer Saif ul Mulook and multiple security sources in Pakistan told AFP that Bibi had gone to Canada.
Bibi -- a laborer from Pakistan’s central Punjab province -- was first convicted of blasphemy in 2010 and was on death row until her acquittal last year.
Her case has drawn worldwide attention to religious extremism in Pakistan, where the saga has sparked violent demonstrations and high-profile assassinations.
She has technically been free to leave Pakistan since January when the Supreme Court dismissed a legal challenge to her acquittal in October but awaited an asylum deal in a third country.
In November Trudeau said Ottawa was holding talks with Pakistan about bringing her to Canada.
On Wednesday British Prime Minister Theresa May appeared to confirm that Canada was her destination, saying its asylum offer was "right and appropriate."
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also said in a statement that she had "safely reunited with her family."

Asia Bibi "Safely Reunited" with Family | Mike Pompeo


Washington, USA (AFP) | The Christian woman at the center of a decade-long blasphemy row in Pakistan has been returned to her family, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Tuesday, months after her death sentence was overturned.
"The United States welcomes the news that Asia Bibi has safely reunited with her family," Pompeo said in a statement.
Bibi -- a laborer from central Punjab province -- was first convicted of blasphemy in 2010 and was on death row until her acquittal last year.
Pompeo did not confirm where Bibi had gone since leaving Pakistan, though British Prime Minister Theresa May appeared to confirm earlier that Canada was her destination.
"Asia Bibi is now free, and we wish her and her family all the best following their reunification," Pompeo added

Facebook Introduces New Tools For Business


Facebook announced two new advertising tools to help small businesses save time and resources so they can focus on growth: Automated Ads, Appointments and new video creative tools.
With Automated Ads, the business owner is asked a few simple questions about their business and their goals to help develop a customized marketing plan for their business.
Some of the most helpful features of Automated Ads include multiple versions of the ad.
Business owners can create up to six different versions of their ads automatically. The automated ads solution will suggest call-to-action buttons, text and other creative details based on information from the business’ Page, and once the ad is active, the solution will automatically show the best-performing version.
The tailored audience suggestion is the solution that will suggest audience options or recommendations based on information from the business’ Page.
The recommended budget that generates results: The solution will recommend a budget most likely to get business results based on the goal. Businesses can also provide their own budget and the solution will share the estimated results that they can expect.
Timely notification about your ads is also the feature. Businesses will receive notifications to help them understand how their ads are performing and how they can improve. These can include suggested changes like refreshing an image or notifications when the ad starts generating results like a lead or sale.
Jordi Fornies, Director, Emerging Markets, APAC at Facebook said: “Small businesses in South Asia don't always have the time or resources to gain marketing expertise, but this shouldn't prevent them from creating ads that drive results. Our new Automated Ads solution takes the guesswork out of creating effective ads that can run on Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and Audience Network and make it easier for SMBs to focus on growth”.
Facebook is also expanding its free tools for businesses, allowing them to book and manage appointments on Facebook. Businesses can use the appointments feature to enable new and existing customers to book services with their business. They can accept appointments online and send reminders to customers through Messenger or text message. They can also customize their business' menu of services, display availability and accept and manage all appointments directly from their business Page. And to keep things organized, they can also sync appointments with their personal calendar or another appointment management tool.
Appointments on Facebook are free for all businesses on Facebook and Instagram, including SMS and Messenger reminders to customers to prevent no-shows.
Facebooking is also introducing new ways to easily edit existing video with three new video editing tools: automatic cropping, video trimming and image and text overlays. These tools, available in both Ads Manager and Business Manager, can help reduce the resources needed to create compelling video content for SMBs. 

Asia Bibi Leaves Pakistan


Karachi, Pakistan | Asia Bibi, a Christian woman acquitted by  Supreme Court in a blasphemy case, has left Pakistan, Geo News reported on Wednesday. 
Quoting sources close to the woman, the TV channel reported that Asia Bibi has been shifted to Canada.
After being convicted in 2010 and spending years on death row,  she was acquitted by apex court October last year. 
Last month Prime Minister Imran Khan told BBC Asia Bibi will soon leave Pakistan, without disclosing the date.
BBC News World Affairs editor, John Simpson, had asked the premier about the current status of the Christian lady who was acquitted by the Supreme Court in the blasphemy case.
A three-judge special bench, headed by the then chief justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar and comprising Justice Asif Saeed Khosa and Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel, had acquitted Asia Bibi on October 31 last year.
The 56-page detailed judgment was penned by  Mian Saqib Nisar and included a concurrent opinion by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa.

China Takes Notice of Pakistani Women’s Smuggling


Islamabad, Pakistan | The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has arrested at least eight Chinese nationals for luring young Pakistani girls into fake marriages and then forcing them into prostitution in China, authorities confirmed to AFP Tuesday.
The FIA said four Pakistanis who facilitated fake marriages have also been arrested. A spokesman for the FIA said more detentions were expected as the investigation continues. Those arrested included eight Chinese nationals and four Pakistanis, said Jameel Ahmad, a top official at the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), which deals with human trafficking. “We busted the gang after receiving information about increasing smuggling of Pakistani women to China where they are thrown into prostitution,” Ahmad told Reuters. He said several gangs were believed to be operating, mainly targeting members of Pakistan’s Christian minority.
The arrests came a week after Human Rights Watch said Pakistan should be alarmed by recent reports of trafficking of women and girls to China. It said the allegations were disturbingly similar to the pattern of trafficking of “brides” to China from at least five other Asian countries. The Chinese Embassy in Islamabad has also raised alarm over illegal, cross-border matchmaking services that are often a front for human trafficking.
Last month the embassy said China is cooperating with the Pakistani law enforcement agencies to crack down on illegal matchmaking. It denied reports that the women are being trafficked for sale of their organs as “misleading and groundless”. Ahmad said a police raid he led on a wedding ceremony last week in the eastern city of Faisalabad was a major breakthrough in the investigation. He said a man and a woman from China and a fake priest were arrested at the ceremony where a Christian girl was to be married.
“The gang members confessed that they had sent at least 36 Pakistani girls to China where they are being used for prostitution,” he said. 
The majority were Christians from different districts in eastern Punjab province, he said. 
“China is cooperating with Pakistani law enforcement agencies to crack down on illegal matchmaking centres. We remind both Chinese and Pakistani citizens to remain vigilant and not be cheated,” the Chinese embassy in Islamabad said.
A report revealed that middlemen trapped Pakistani girls by promising them Rs40,000 monthly besides mobile phones and Chinese visas.
A TV channel also aired images of several Chinese men with Pakistani women, including two teenage girls, at an illegal matchmaking center in Lahore. Thousands of Chinese are now living in Pakistan since the launch of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CEPEC) project in 2015. Many of them have even bought houses and cars. 
Some Chinese men have ulterior motives behind marrying Pakistani girls, as they take them to China after marriage and force them into prostitution and even sell their organs. The local facilitators told the TV channel they would lure families into an agreement by saying their would-be Chinese son-in-law was seeking Pakistani citizenship so he could invest in the country as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project. 
Banners for weddings: Roadside banners and posters can also been seen in Youhanabad — the largest Christian locality – in Lahore, inviting families to marry their girls with Chinese. The banners read: “Long live Pak-China friendship! Attention honorable Christians. Proposals of deserving, poor and good families are urgently required for China. Chinese family will bear all expenses. Education is not a problem.”

How Does the Authority of the Congregation Work Together with the Authority of Elders?

Elders are to oversee the flock, but that doesn’t override the congregation’s responsibility in affirming truth.
Credit | Eric Bancroft

Pakistan Named 10th "ANGRIEST" Country in the World in New Survey


Pakistan has been named the tenth angriest country in the world, as per a recent survey conducted recently.
The survey conducted by Gallup Global Emotions Report contained interviews by over 150,000 people from more than 140 countries around the world, naming Pakistan the tenth angriest of the lot.
According to the findings published, levels of stress, worries, and sadness had elevated amongst people with 39 percent claiming to have been tangled in worries and 35 percent under immense stress prior to the survey.
With Armenia topping the list, Iran and Iraq were second and third consecutively after which Palestine, Morocco, Turkey, Niger, Chad and Libya followed.
The annual, semiannual and biennial Gallup World Poll sheds light on weighty issues around the globe. 

At Least 45 Children Killed in Sri Lanka Attacks, United Nations


Geneva, Switzerland (AFP) | At least 45 children were among the more than 320 people killed in the suicide bomb attacks in Sri Lanka, the United Nations said Tuesday.
"The total now is 45 children who died," UNICEF spokesman Christophe Boulierac told reporters in Geneva, stressing that others "are wounded and are now fighting for their lives," meaning the toll among minors from the Sunday attacks could rise.

Sri Lanka Bombings Toll Rises to 359


Colombo, Sri Lanka (AFP) | The toll in a series of suicide bomb blasts on Easter Sunday targeting hotels and churches in Sri Lanka has risen to 359, police said Wednesday.
The additional deaths were the result of the wounded dying of their injuries. At least 500 people were injured in the attacks.
The blasts have been claimed by Daesh, with Sri Lanka’s government pointing the finger at the little-known local Islamist group National Thowheeth Jama’ath, but saying the group likely had "international" help.
"Certainly the security apparatus is of the view that there are foreign links and some of the evidence points to that," Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told media on Tuesday night.
"We’ve been following up on this claim, there were suspicions that there were links with ISIS (Daesh)," he added.
Overnight, Sri Lankan police carried out fresh raids, detained 18 more people in their hunt for those involved in the attacks.
Nearly 60 people have been detained since the Sunday blasts, which ripped through high-end hotels and churches packed with Easter worshippers in the capital Colombo and beyond.
It is the worst violence in the country since the end of a Tamil insurgency a decade ago.

Supreme Court Restores Tax Collection on Mobile Phone Cards


Islamabad, Pakistan | Supreme Court of Pakistan has restored tax collection on mobile phone cards, saying the apex court will not interfere in this matter.
A three-member bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, heard the case pertaining to advance tax on cellphone cards.
The apex court in June 2018 had suspended tax collection on mobile cards.
The then Chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar had taken notice of the high levy charged on mobile phone cards in the country as he asked under which law Rs 40 were being deducted from Rs 100 mobile cards.
At that time, as per some reports, on the charge of a Rs 100 pre-paid mobile card, a 19.5 percent Federal Excise Duty (FED) was charged along with 12.5 percent withholding tax and 10 percent service/maintenance charge.
According to statistics revealed by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority in January last year, the number of mobile phone users stands at 144 million as compared to 142.5 million in October 2017.
The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday asked if every citizen is able to pay tax and if a Cartman would go to the Income Tax Commissioner to get a refund on mobile phone card he had loaded.
The SC observed that the government should act honestly on the tax matters and stressed that tax procedures should be made easy for citizens so that it could be determined by identity cards as to who was a taxpayer and who was not.
The chief justice asked how many people demand the refund of advance tax as they have to see when and how much tax would be applicable. He remarked that the court would also have to consider whether the government enforced the law correctly or not.
A huge amount was withdrawn from the pockets of masses due to the law. On a court query, Attorney General for Pakistan Anwar Mansoor Khan said every client pay advance tax on a mobile card and a consumer on whom income tax was not applicable could demand a refund.
The counsel for Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) said Rs90 billion tax was not collected due to suspension of one point of tax collection law by the apex court.
The chief justice responded that the court could void a law but it could not suspend a law. Justice Qazi Faez Isa remarked that the court would also have to review utility tax along with income tax.
Justice Ijazul Ahsan remarked that the court had only suspended the recovery of withholding tax but not suspended the law. According to the law if a person was not applicable of tax, he would have to get a certificate from Commissioner Income Tax, he added.
He remarked that the state should be sincere with its citizens. He remarked that advance tax was income tax according to the definition and how a consumer could pay tax who did not fall in the category of taxpayer.
He remarked that the court wanted that the government should form such a mechanism that non-filers should not have to pay the tax. 

How to Block Your Stolen OR Lost Cell Phone


What to do if your phone gets lost or stolen? 

Here are some easy-to-follow guidelines to secure your personal information stored on your stolen or lost cell phone. 
As per the website, there are four ways that you can follow to block your cell phone if gets stolen or lost.
The first and easy step includes the online blocking procedure for your Mobile Phone. Follow the instructions mentioned at CPLC website http://www.cplc.org.pk to lock your phone:

1. Contact CPLC 24/7 call centre helplines 1102 021-35662222 & 021-35682222 for lodging complaint of snatched / stolen / Lost Mobile Phone.
2. Provide IMEI no. of snatched/ stolen/ lost mobile phone along with other relevant information.
3. Information of snatched/ stolen/ lost mobile phone is sent to PTA for issuing blocking instructions to all mobile network operators.
4. Mobile network operators block snatched/ stolen/ lost mobile phone within 24 hours.

You can call at the following mentioned numbers to get your lost phone’s data to save by locking it:

CPLC (Citizen Police Liaison Committee): 021-35662222
Police (Rescue 15) : 15
PTA (Pakistan Telecom Authority): 0800-25625

They will get some basic info along with the IMEI number of your lost mobile set, will request all the mobile operators to block this IMEI on their networks to save your information.
Other ways to block your stolen or lost cell phone includes email and fax.

You can fax your complaint at 021-35683336 or by emailing at imei@pta.gov.pk.

The IMEI number you have to send can be found underneath mobile’s battery and warranty card, you can also find your IMEI of you set by dialing the sequence *#06# into your phone.
Save your IMEI number before something bad happens to your cell phone. 

Sri Lanka Easter Bombings | Mass Casualties in Churches and Hotels

Several people were killed as worshippers attended Easter service [Chamila Karunarathne/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images]

Report (AL JAZEERA NEWS) | Sri Lanka's capital Colombo has been hit by at least two new blasts, hours after the country was struck by a series of six bombings on churches and hotels that killed at least 156 people and wounded about 400. 
 [Chamila Karunarathne/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images]
The seventh explosion occurred at a hotel near the national zoo in the capital, killing at least two more people, police said, while an eighth blast hit the suburb of Orugodawatta in the north of Colombo.
There were no further details on what was targeted, police said.
Most of the victims were killed in three churches where worshippers were attending Easter Sunday services. Three other bombings struck luxury hotels - the Cinnamon Grand, Kingsbury, and Shangri-La - located in the heart of Colombo, killing at least 35 foreigners.
The first explosion was reported in a church located in the capital. The other blasts followed within half an hour.
One of the churches targeted was St Anthony's Shrine in Colombo. The other two were St Sebastian's in Negombo, about 30km from the capital and another in Batticaloa, 250km east of the capital.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will hold an emergency meeting with the country's top military officials of the National Security Council. He has also called for an emergency convening of the nation's parliament on Monday.
Police spokesperson Ruwan Gunasekera said the injured were being evacuated while security forces have cordoned off the areas and search operations are underway.
Photos circulating on social media showed the roof of one church had been blown almost entirely off in the blast.
The floor was littered with a mixture of roof tiles, splintered wood, and blood.
Several people could be seen covered in blood, some trying to help those with more serious injuries.
There were no immediate claims of responsibility.

Government Response

The Sri Lankan government has declared a nationwide curfew with immediate effect, junior defence minister Ruwan Wijewardene said.
"A curfew will be imposed until things settle down," he told reporters in Colombo.
Government officials also said major social media networks and messaging apps, including Facebook and WhatsApp, have been blocked inside the country to prevent misinformation and rumours.
"The government has decided to block all social media platforms in order to prevent incorrect and wrong information being spread. This is only a temporary measure," Udaya R Seneviratne, secretary to the president, said in a statement.
Al Jazeera's Minelle Fernandez, reporting from Colombo, said the crisis was still unfolding.
"We're hearing that Colombo national hospital is still receiving casualties brought in from the multiple locations.
"In terms of law enforcement, we've been hearing that all festivities have been canceled, that security in and around the city has been tightened," Fernandez reported.
"It's still very open-ended … it's too early [to speculate who is behind the attack] but security in the capital and the airport has been stepped up following the attacks," she added.

Coordinated Attacks

Rajiva Wijesinha, a former member of the Sri Lankan parliament, told Al Jazeera the coordinated nature of the attacks has shocked the country.
"It's actually extremely chilling. We've never had anything of this sort before. Sri Lanka had a terrible time under Tamil Tiger terrorism for about 25 years and then there was a great sense of relief, which I am afraid the West has been fighting with us about, when we got rid of the tiger terrorists," Rajiva said.
"But the tiger terrorists were never as well organised never and never quite as brilliant in synchronisation and this is obviously something on a much larger scale which is frankly quite terrifying and you know the reactions I've heard suggest people are moving into panic mode again," he said. 
"And that is understandable because of the range of these attacks and the concentration on the Christian churches and then the hotels as well suggest we are dealing with something really quite horrible," Rajiva added.
Speaking to Al Jazeera from Colombo, Ashwin Hemmathagama, a reporter with the Daily FT, said the attacks were a blow to the country's tourism sector.
"At the moment, police have cordoned off the areas and cautioned the public to remain vigilant. They have asked the public to stay indoors and avoid hasty decisions because investigations are underway."
"After the civil war ended, almost a decade ago, the tourism industry was picking up. Basically, everything was back to its current perspective, but unfortunately, this kind of attack will definitely cripple the tourism sector."



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