Thursday, November 8, 2007

A motivational poem

Kehtey hain:
"Khamosh raho tu sukhi raho ge
Ghar mein raho tu sukhi raho ge
Kitabon mein jo tum ne seekha hai
Bhool jao tu sukhi raho ge
Sola crore jo bhooke mar rahe hain
Marney do, tu sukhi raho ge"

Insaaf per nafiz nazar-bandi hai
DiloN ke milne pe pabandi hai
ZubanoN pe taale laga rahe hain
Niyyat in hukamranoN ki gandi hai

kia yeh aik mushkil faisla hai?
kia ab bhi intizaar ki gunjaish hai?

Nahi chahiey mujhe yeh
Sisk'ti hoi lachaar zindagi
Dari hoi, murda, bekaar zindagi

Bohat kos chuke tareekh ko
Bohat pooj chuke iblees ko
Haq ki roshnai jab ragoN mein ho
Farz hai badlna taqdeer ko

Jeena hai tu dil se jeo
Dil ki baat her bol ke jeo
Jin haathoN mein bandoqeiN hain
Mal-e-haraam ki sandooqeiN hain
Un zalim hathoN ku tor ke jeo
Dil ki baat her bol ke jeo

And that inverted Bowl they call the Sky,
Whereunder crawling coop'd we live and die,
Life not your hands to It for help-- for It
As impotently moves as you or I.

-Omar Khayyam

(The Emergency Times Eds- We encourage all artistic expression of our revolutionary and unyielding thoughts and feelings. We have a rich tradition of poetry, literature, theatre and music and want to see more of the same. Let us also revisit the works of our historic greats such as Habib Jalib Faiz and Manto. It is time we found inspiration within ourselves ad within our history, and devised novel ways of raising our voices into a war cry to battle all forms of opression. Any such purposeful work be it in the form of theatre, music, poetry or art is more than welcome. Contribute pictures videos, audio files and other web links.
The artist. The intellectual. The revolutionary. In perfect harmony. This is how our movement must crystallize).

Iqbal Day and the Emergency

A Parody of a famous urdu national song

A solemn oath of solidarity

Theemergencytimes Eds-

We thoroughly condemn the government’s atrocious behaviour, especially after learning the dark details of the imprisonment of Aitzaz Ahsan, Muneer A Malik, Tariq Mahmood and Ali Ahmed Kurd, lawyers who have become the icons of our struggle for justice. We take this opportunity to express solidarity with them all, including Asma Jehangir and her friends from the HRCP protest. We also thoroughly sympathize with the families of all the lawyers and activists who are bearing the brunt of the government’s criminal high handedness. We express our support and unity with their pain and their cause and urge them that they are not alone. Inshallah we will be trying our level best towards contacting them all soon and let it be known that we rally behind their cause with every ounce of our beings. Let us also not forget the valiant resistance of those judges who have refused to take oath under the insulting and shameful PCO. We would like to take this opportunity to urge all readers to reflect on the level of commitment and bravery shown by these inspiring individuals and to take something of their tireless commitment back with us. You urge us on. You keep the hope in us alive. You keep our spirits soaring and our hearts strong. God bless you. We are all with you. In complete Unity.

IMPORTANT! Asma Jehangir calls for solidarity with the lawyers

Appeal for support to lawyers and judges in Pakistan

I am fortunate to be under house arrest while my colleagues are suffering. The Musharaf government has declared martial law to settle scores with lawyers and judges. While the terrorists remain on the loose and continue to occupy more space in Pakistan, senior lawyers are being tortured.

The civil society of Pakistan urges bar associations all over the world to mobilize public opinion in favor of the judges and lawyers in Pakistan. A large number of judges of superior courts are under arrest. Thousands of lawyers are imprisoned, beaten and tortured.

In particular the cases of Muneer A Malik, Aitzaz Ahsan, Tariq Mahmood and Ali Ahmed Kurd are serious. Muneer A Malik, the former President of the Supreme Court Bar Association and leader of the lawyers' movement has been shifted to the notorious Attack Fort. He is being tortured and is under the custody of the military intelligence. Tariq Mahmood, former President of the Supreme Court Bar Association, was imprisoned in Adiala jail. No one was allowed to see him and it is reported that he has been shifted to an unknown place. Mr. Ali Ahmed Kurd, former Vice Chair of the Pakistan Bar Council is in the custody of military intelligence and being kept at an undisclosed place. Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan, President of the Supreme Court Bar is being kept in Adiayala jail in solitary confinement.

Representatives of bar associations should approach their governments to pressure the government of Pakistan to release all lawyers and judges and immediately provide access to Muneer A Malik, Tariq Mahmood, Ali Ahmed Kurd and Aitzaz Ahsan. The bars are also urged to hold press conferences in their country and express their solidarity with the lawyers of Pakistan who are struggling to establish the rule of law.

Asma Jahngir

Advocate Supreme Court of Pakistan

Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan

IMPORTANT! Civilian Protest outside Press Club Saturday- Spread the word..!

Demonstration in front of the press club, Davis Road, on 10th of November 2007. at 1pm

Protest against this Martial Law

(Called Emergency by the govt.)

A state of emergency takes away all your fundamental rights.

These rights were not given to us by any military dictator as CHARITY. In fact our forefathers gave sacrifices to earn these rights for us.

Our judiciary is our nation’s pride, hope and the source of justice.

This judiciary is being punished by a military dictator for trying to protect our fundamental rights and for standing up for the truth. If our silent majority doesn’t act now, soon there may be no Pakistan left.

You can register your protest by:

Wearing black head bands
Wearing Black Wrist bands or Arm bands.
You can hoist black flags on your house or your car.

You can join us in a peaceful demonstration in front of the press club, Davis Road, on 10th of November 2007.

At 1pm.

Note: We are not a political party, NGO or a lawyer’s association. We are just a group of concerned citizens.

A comedy of terrors =)

(Theemergencytimes Eds- Cannot resist putting this one up. Its good to see that humour is still alive even as the despots in the corridors of power tighten the noose around popular opinion. This piece very amply jests out the deep disgust we civilians feel today)

In a case involving three culprits accused of having burgled a house, a local court decided that even if the act had taken place, since the court was only called upon after the happening, it has no option but to let the accused off

All the reports in this issue have been filed by our correspondent Jaajee Cigrutnosh (Eds- hehehe)

LAHORE: Jurists across the world are discussing the revolutionary formulation that has informed the decision by the New Court of Pakistan (NCP) which set aside on Tuesday an earlier order by the Old Court of Pakistan (OCP) against the decision by Big Bro to declare Emergency and promulgate the PCO, a combination referred to as Emergency-plus.

The NCP, working under the PCO, reached this verdict on the basis of a simple logic: the previous order by the OCP ruling the promulgation of Emergency-plus as unconstitutional is null and void because Big Bro had moved before the OCP passed its order nullifying the move by him.

This correspondent has learned that while jurists are panting with excitement at the prospect of this conceptual breakthrough in the discipline, a topic to which we shall return shortly, the Bush White House has also commended the NCP for a decision that, according to White House spokeswoman Snow White, has revolutionised not just domestic but international law as well.

Speaking to Daily Times on the phone, Ms White, said: "This verdict vindicates America's offensive against Iraq. If it is legally tenable that an action cannot be judged against because it has taken place before a judgement on it could be passed, then America was within its legal rights to have invaded Iraq."

Another set of experts, the civilian warriors in the think-tanks as well as military generals, are also euphoric following this verdict. Admiral Dhai'n-Pattas of the US Central Command told this correspondent that the decision provides perfect cover to the so far nettlesome issue of pre-emption and preventive war.

"There was moral hazard in these doctrines," said Admiral Dhai'n-Pattas, "but it is now clear that if an action has been carried out, any subsequent invocation of law to set it aside is void for the simple reason that such action has already been carried out."

Admiral Dhai'n-Pattas likened it to a tennis (or Squash, if any reader is more inclined towards the latter) drop shot, saying: "You just can't pick this one up; it's sheer beauty".

Jurists are still trying to understand the full import of the decision by NCP, but most are agreed that its application has posed a major conceptual challenge to the entire spectrum of law.

"If it can be determined that a bench of judges cannot declare void an order that has been passed prior to such adjudication because that order has also deprived those judges of their legal mandate before they could adjudicate against it, then we have a whole range of possibilities here," said a professor of law talking to Daily Times.

The professor said that this would mean any ruler could get rid of the judges as and when he/she so desired and any court ruling against such a decision would be unacceptable because the verdict would inevitably follow the action.

However, this is a minority, spoiler view. Most decent professors of law Daily Times talked to were of the view that this judgement removes the misconception that law can override power. "Power has historically created law; we are happy that this decision has put paid to the nonsense trotted out by the classic liberal literature on jurisprudence," was how one of them put it.

These professors are of the view that by pushing law onto the Shakespearean heath, the NCP had done a tremendous service to the profession. "Nuances are good but of late we have gone too much into them, losing sight of the fact that power creates law and that is an historical reality," said another professor.


Elsewhere in Pakistan:

CHAK 69 ULTA-PULTA: In a case involving three culprits accused of having burgled a house, a local court decided that even if the act had taken place, since the court was only called upon after the happening, it had no option but to let the accused off. The court then chided the owner for living in opulence which it said was an act of provocation.

The honourable judge also averred that the act having been successfully committed, its success itself was a determination of its legality. To this end the judge cited various cases including the French, Russian and Chinese Revolutions.

He later sent a press release regretting that he had forgotten about the Iranian revolution and requested, in the same breath, that the reference to that great event may also be included in any report on the story.


RAWALPINDI: After the great success of television channels such as Emergency Food, Dalda ka Dustarkhan and Masalah, cable operators have decided to bring in more entertainment for Pakistani viewers.

Talking to Daily Times, residents of Makhanpura in the city said that the one good thing about Big Bro's gag order was the absence of garrulous and quarrelsome talk-show hosts and politicians.

"At least we are spared the news channels; they were always moaning and groaning; my husband wouldn't let me watch Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi; now even he watches it," said a housewife who was too shy to tell her name and said that she may be identified simply as Munnay ke Amma.

Another resident, a girl who is the first one in the family to go to college and is eager to speak English, told DT that "Mein tau drawmas like karti hun; shukar hai yeh news ke bakwas has ended."

There is also a sense among women that watching food channels is likely to kitchen-train men.

The boys, while happy that new channels have been taken off the air, however, want the government of Pakistan to introduce FTV and such other channels as Trendz etc. "Just because we are sick of moaning and groaning politicians doesn't mean we don't like moaning and groaning per se," said one. (Ed's note: He never used 'per se' but this being a quality English-language newspaper, we need to retain our sense of the language.)

A highly placed official told DT that given the rising demand for entertainment through economy of clothes the government was seriously thinking of taking a positive decision in this regard. As one official put it, "It's the government's job to respect public opinion and if this is what people want, we will do whatever we can to come up to their expectations."

LAHORE: Our final political story of the day deals with an announcement about the coming to Pakistan of Ripley's Believe It or Not (second Season). AXN advertises Ripley as "a name that's synonymous with the strange, the fantastic and the bizarre". Sources close to Murree Brewery say Ripley is just what the doctor prescribed for viewers in Pakistan.

Ejaz Haider is Op-Ed Editor of Daily Times and Consulting Editor of The Friday Times. He can be reached at

The room is empty,
And the window is open

"My secret identity is" by Charles Simic

'...And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture':) Neruda

Reports from the Peshawar High Court

From the Daily Times.\11\08\story_8-11-2007_pg7_27

'Judges taking oath under PCO liable to contempt of court'

* Deposed PHC chief justice calls emergency proclamation martial law
* Says around 70 judges awaiting his instructions to resign

By Akhtar Amin

PESHAWAR: Deposed Peshawar High Court (PHC) Chief Justice Tariq Pervez
Khan said on Wednesday that all judges of the superior judiciary who
took oath under the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO) were liable
to contempt of court, for the Supreme Court had restrained them from
doing so.

During an interview with Daily Times at his residence after the
proclamation of emergency, which he called a full-fledged martial law,
he said those who assumed their charges under the PCO were no longer
judges of the superior judiciary.

Justice Pervez Khan, who still considers himself to be the top
adjudicator of the Frontier, said that after receiving the verdict of
the seven-member Supreme Court bench, which declared the proclamation
of emergency as unlawful and retrained judges from taking oath under
the PCO, I communicated the instructions to all PHC judges, except
Justice Raj Muhammad Khan who was on way to Dera Ismail Khan.

Pervez Khan said, "Assault on judiciary has extremely perplexed the
judges," and added, "About 70-80 judicial officers of the province
have contacted me so far, seeking my go-ahead signal to resign from
their posts. "I've asked them to wait as I don't want to issue them
any directives without consulting Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad

To a query, he said President Musharraf had imposed martial law under
the garb of emergency. "How ridiculous is it that the Constitution is
suspended but the parliament and provincial assemblies are intact;
they are constitutional bodies."

Referring to President Musharraf's speech to the nation on television,
he said, "What justification will he present for the release of 29
militants in exchange for the release of 213 kidnapped troops.

"A court issues release orders for the detainees when the government
fails to prove charges against the accused," he said, while adding
that the courts only bailed out the accused but that the government
released even militants through negotiations, though they were
convicted by the Anti-Terrorism Court.

"The law does not contain any provision meant to negotiate with
criminals. Law and order deteriorated in the country because the
government started negotiations with criminals, rather than dealing
with them in accordance with the law," Justice Khan added. He said
hopefully the future of judiciary was bright and that the civil
society would have to play its role for the establishment of a
transparent judiciary.

Justice Khan also expressed his concern over the role of civil
society, which, he added, did not react to emergency imposition
properly, but "now it should act for suspension of fundamental rights
of the 160 million Pakistanis."

Media activities and new developments


Two channels are come back on air, CNBC-Pakistan & Business Plus. All the other news channels are still off air via cable, although those with satellite get all the broadcasts. Apparently satellite dishes have been selling like hot cakes. People were also crowding around lectronics shops with televisions outside broadcasting through satellites.Today there was an order banning their sale (in Karachi at least).
The Washington Post reported that the ISI had picked up Mir Shakilur Rehman, the owner of the largest media group, Jang – In the Heart of Pakistan, a Deep Sense of Anxiety, By Emily Wax - – (a senior management person I asked about this says that 'they did talk to him and advised him re: the coverage. Later an email was received saying that if the group wrote anything against the army he & his family would be hunted down like rats. Also, yesterday we received a letter, supposedly sent by the Taliban, threatening to blow up Jang & Geo offices. But as u can see, we are holding steady"). It's a good piece anyway.

PTV DETERMINEDLY OPTIMISTIC - TALKED TO NAWAZ SHARIF, ASKING WHY HIS PML-N WEREN'T PART OF ARD mtg at which BB announced a rally in Pindi on the 9 th and a long march on the 13th. (both of which the govt has said they will not allow)… PTV also talked to Amin Fahim of PPP - they've clearly come a long way since the time no opposition was allowed on air. But the divisions are obvious (which obviously is the design).

Nuzhat Ahmad writes: "The NYT and the Post have been plastered with Pakistan news. Today's op-ed page in NYT is almost all about Pakistan. I request everyone to start an organized "letters to the editor" campaign. It does not matter whether they get published or not. The point is to have the newspaper receive hundreds of letters urging support for the people of Pakistan in their struggle.I have already started this in Philadelphia, and have approached Pakistanis as well as non-Pakistanis, and most have complied. Please keep the letters short, to the point, and avoid a rant. The e-mail addresses are as follows: &" (P.S. I would add, please post copies of the letters to the Emergency Wiki page -


In Lahore LUMS students staged another protest, despite their campus being surrounded by police. EXTREMELY IMPORTANT: PLEASE BLUR ALL PICTURES BEFORE YOU SPREAD THEM!
15 LUMS students have been identified and are being demanded for detention
A group of citizens presented several bouquets of flowers to Sindh Chief Justice Sabihuddin Ahmed at his residence today. Police vans on either end of his lane blocked cars from going through so the citizens parked on the main road and walked down the lane without any obstructions.
Another group of about 40 did a brief demonstration in Karachi.
An activist who attended two protests in Islamabad today says they were both very good - "the one in front of the kacheri was typical of the civil society - about 150 ppl... it was very peaceful - policemen said they were there to safeguard us ehhehehhe. The one in the evening in front of parliament was huge by Islamabad standards - but quite political in nature – of course - 500 or so - and police released tear gas when ppl tried to break through the barricades. And they had speakers the size of me with faiz's poem blaring and people dancing in the lights of cars." This is the first protest in Pakistan that has NOT been broken up by the police

According to PTV News, the protest in front of Parliament was called by the PPP. There was brief footage of the demonstration. According to the report, protestors tried to break through the barricades, the police used tear gas and arrested a few people – but these visuals were not shown.
Boston is getting activated for a protest, so is Chicago.


Meanwhile, in the PTV news the newscaster sounds terribly self-congratulatory on behalf of the government. But they can't hide the fact that the parliamentary session they are showing is half empty and totally lackluster. Shaukat Aziz just said congratulated the house for being the first to complete its term, and stressed that democracy has been brought to Pakistan!


It has been said earlier, but needs to be said again! It becomes apparent from the current political scenario (read: MARTIAL LAW) that the real 'terrorists' that the (make-believe) state of Pakistan is cracking down upon is the political leaders, the legal community and civil society—in short any sort of opposition it is facing. Now, the crucial point to ponder upon here is that if the current 'emergency' is being justified on the grounds of curbing terrorism in the country, shouldn't there have been any immediate policy changes in that regard? Shouldn't the emergency have been 'used' to facilitate this objective? But it seems that the other 'evil' that the General (and deliberately choose not to say 'President' here) mentioned in his address is more of a concern for him than the justification offered to the world at large. In my view this is, simply put, a blatant mockery of the ideas and rights of freedom and liberty, and are desperate measures to cling to power. If this doesn't convince you, consider how well-planned the Government's strategy was to curb any sort of resistance to this brutal measure; they knew the lawyers had taken charge previously, and they would again, and to emasculate this resistance by cracking down hard upon them was their first and foremost objective.
And we, the youth, the students of this country, are as culpable as the regime. For we gave them so much room to carry on their atrocities that it got so worse as this brutal oppression. Had we taken to the streets and provided effective resistance to mete a final blow when the opportunity was there, especially during the previous protests to restore the CJ, the situation might not have gotten to where it is. Had we risen up, the way we should have, when the carnage was committed in Karachi on May 12, this country wouldn't be where it stands right now. Had we stood up for what's right, we would not be as desperate and frustrated as we are getting with this country with every passing day.
WE NEED TO FIX THIS. If the principle of freedom does not convince you or the brutalities don't anger you enough, look around you and see how your lives are being affected. Business? Pakistan's international credit-ratings, according to the international agency, Moody's, have run into negative, implying a dry-out in foreign investments in the country. Education? I don't see that time very far away when you would be TOLD by the state what to study and what not to. We see darkness ahead of us, feel hopelessness and despair, but all has not ended. Now is the time to stand up for your rights; now is the time to think of your responsibility to those being crushed, and to this nation. For once, we need to fight for what's right. For once, we need to end the oppression that has marred the history, development and social fabric of this country. For once, we need to think beyond the surface of material luxuries and opportunities for a brighter, sustainable, stable future.