January 08, 2005

Nuggets from the Urdu press : Pakistan

Police hunts actors in Multan
According to Jang, Multan DCO ordered the Multan police to attack the theatres in the city to root out fahashi (obscenity). The police raided the theatres and arrested 37 actors and producers. The citizens had to run around saving their lives. When they demanded their money back the theatres were not able to pay, after which the crowds destroyed the theatres. Actresses Sitara and Neha Ali lost their luggage while one actress Hina Shaheen was able to flee Multan and come to Lahore. Multan fell after Gujranwala succumbed to moral policing earlier.

Sexually abused by clerics
Quoted in daily Pakistan, minister of state for religious affairs Dr Amir Liaquat Hussain stated that last year 2,000 cases of sexual abuse of children in schools were reported, many of them from the religious seminaries, but no action was taken. He said in 2004 only 500 cases were being investigated. He said it was time the nation woke up to the bitter truth of child abuse in the seminaries. Meanwhile parliament in Islamabad demanded that he apologise for having accused the clergy of sexual abuse of children and thus spreading AIDS. Daily Pakistan reported that in a rally of the MMA, minister Amir Liaquat was burnt in effigy. According to Nawa-e-Waqt, in Karachi MQM’s deputy convenor Dr Farooq Sattar too criticised his minister for maligning the ulema. Minister Amir Liaquat later clarified that he had been misquoted.

Hide sexual abuse by clerics
Quoted by Jang, minister for religious affairs Ijazul Haq stated that it was wrong to say that the clerics in the seminaries sexually abused the children put in their charge. He added that if such incidents were reported they should be concealed to save the repute of the ulema from being blemished.

Cleric ousted for gambling
According to Khabrain, the traders of Shubda Bazar in Peshawar claimed that they had removed Maulana Shuaib from the bazaar mosque because he had arranged gambling in the building of the mosque. They said he was a pretender and that he had taken a delegation of fake mullahs to Afghanistan to meet president Karzai.

Boys and girls can sit together
Quoted in Jang, DG Parks & Horticulture said that if young couples were sitting in the Race Course Park in Lahore there was no law which disallowed them to do so. He said he would not comment on the attack mounted by the Lahore police against the youth, after which they were taken to a police station.

Nasibo Lal beaten up
Quoted in daily Pakistan, singer Nasibo Lal said that she was slapped and beaten with shoes in the film industry if she refused to sing obscene songs. Talking to journalists she started crying while describing how the government too forced her to perform in front of visiting Indian prime minister Vajpayee when she was crying over her mother’s dead body. She claimed that death threats were delivered when she refused to sing. She said she was given great respect in India and she was prepared to go to India a hundred times.

‘Tiger’ Niazi and sexual hunger of troops
Sarerahe wrote in Nawa-e-Waqt that General ‘Tiger’ Niazi commanding troops in East Pakistan in 1971 used to ask his troops about how many Bengalis they had killed and how many women they had raped. When asked why he did that, he said how could he expect his troops to wait till they reached Jhelum to satisfy their desires.

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