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Saturday, April 26, 2014

Kohat news bites

Source Dawn
The rains continuing in Hangu and Orakzai Agency for five days have flooded the Kohat Toi natural stream and thus, inundating dozens of houses in Hafizabad area in Kohat.
Kohat Toi originates in Orakzai Agency.
The rain water damaged the people’s belongings and forced residents to move out.
According to locals, a former MNA had occupied Kohat Toi section in Hafizabad area before selling plots on it. Also, cultivation of orchards in its way shortened the natural stream’s width.
They, however, insisted their repeated requests to the administration for crackdown on encroachers fell on deaf ears.
The stream bursts its banks every year and flooding nearby areas.
The local residents demanded strict action against illegal sellers and buyers of land on the course of stream to ensure smooth flow of water.
They complained that no official or volunteers came to their help and therefore, they had to vacate houses on their own.
MAN KILLED: An elderly man died and another suffered injuries after lightning struck them in Kamalkhel area on Friday.
The deceased was Nabeel and the injured Samiullah.
Local police registered a case and began investigation.
MAN DROWNS: Noor Mohammad, 8, on Friday drowned in flood water in Kohat Toi.
The efforts of the local residents and divers to trace the body didn’t bear fruit.
The deceased belonged to Dhoda area in Kohat.
DEADLINE FOR SHOPKEEPERS: The local administration on Friday gave shopkeepers seven days to vacate a hospital’s occupied land in Hangu, saying if encroachment stays put, shopkeepers will face the music.
The deadline was set by assistant commissioner Farrukh Attique during a visit to the area along with additional assistant commissioner Hussain Bangash and officials of the tehsil municipal administration and education department.
Mr Attique examined the land record and found that three shops built in a corner of the Liaquat Memorial Hospital at Hangu Square were illegal and that the property belonged to the health department.
In 2011, the administration had asked shopkeepers in question to pay rent to the hospital but the latter refused to do so.
POLICE FORM COMMITTEE: The police on Friday formed a 16-strong committee for bridging the gap between the department and the people and controlling crime in Mansehra.
Former chief justice of the Peshawar High Court Syed Ibne Ali is the committee’s chairman and poet Shahid Zaman its secretary, while Dr Matiullah Shah, district khateeb Maulana Sharifullah, Azam Khan, Feroze Khan, Mohammad Shuja, former district nazim Haji Sardar Khan, Dr Haji Gul, Qamar Zaman Shinwari, Malik Fazl e Rabbi, Mohammad Anwar, Shafiullah Durrani, Mian Shah Raza, Syed Haji Mohammad and Syed Qasim Ali Shah will be its members.
The committee was set up at the office of district police officer Saleem Marwat.
Mr Marwat highlighted the committee’s role for peace and people’s welfare in the district and said members of the panel would sit in the Saddar police station next Monday.
He expressed the hope that the committee would help resolve the people’s minor problems at the police station level.

Corruption probe underway against six ministers: CM

Source Dawn
Chief Minister Pervez Khattak has denied the existence of a forward bloc in Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf and said that some members of his party have demanded removal of corrupt ministers.
He said this while talking exclusively to Dawn at Azeem Bagh, the residence of his adviser MPA Amjid Afridi, on the occasion of marriage of his son here on Saturday.
He said that allegations of corruption against six ministers were being investigated and if anybody was found guilty he would be removed from the provincial cabinet.
He hoped that the talk of forward bloc would automatically end after removal of corrupt ministers, if any.
The chief minister said that at present the government had stopped release of development funds.
He said that the government would first put in place a mechanism to stop corruption and from next year funds would be released regularly as required by the ministers, MPAs and the government departments for development projects.
On the issue of royalty from gas and oil of Kohat, the chief minister said that they were trying to divert additional funds of the MPAs and MNAs in Kohat and Karak to development and spend it on construction of hospitals and other big projects of public interest in southern districts of the province.
He said that at present the royalty and routine funds of parliamentarians were not being used properly and in this regard talks were underway with them to spend the funds in a purposeful way.
About local government elections, Mr Khattak said that the provincial government was ready for holding the polls and waiting for the decision and declaration of date by the Election Commission of Pakistan.
He said that they would take full part in the LG polls and if required form alliance at district level with like-minded parties.
Asked about the peace talks with Taliban, the chief minister said that the federal government was doing its job in a positive manner.
He said that some elements did not want that the dialogue should continue for establishing peace. He hoped that the talks would resume soon.

Jirga held in Kohat

Source Dawn
A jirga was held to persuade the heirs of three victims, who were killed during riots in Muharram last year here, for settlement of the case with the four accused, who are presently in Dera Ismail Khan jail.
The jirga, held at the residence of former MNA Javed Ibrahim Paracha, was led from the side of the accused by former provincial minister Qalbe Hassan. The victims included police constable Noor Mohammad, pedestrian Khairur Rehman, a resident of Kurram Agency, and Arshad of Jhandi Pathak.
On the persuasion of jirga, the heirs of the policeman and pedestrian agreed to take compensation money and drop the murder charges against the four accused. However, relatives of the third victim, who was the activist of banned Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP), said they wanted the law to take its course.
Currently, four members of Said Habib Imambargah are in DI Khan central prison since November last year. They include the imambargah’s caretaker Muharram Ali Shah, Ghazanfar Hussain, Abid Ali Shah and Haider Ali Shah.
Meanwhile, the family of the caretaker of Qaumi Imambargah Sher Mohammad Tori, who was killed on Feb 21 in Kohat, has withdrawn the case registered against three SSP members.
The relatives withdrew the case against Obaidullah Haideri, Shakeel and an unknown person after it emerged during investigations that Mr Tori was killed by his nephew for refusing to give him the hand of his daughter.
The police have registered a new FIR against the nephew of Mr Tori.

Drug addiction on the rise in Kohat

Source Dawn

The number of heroin addicts is increasing in Kohat with each passing day as the police have turned a blind eye to the drug pushing business in the suburbs of the city, the residents complain.
They said that drug addicts regularly gathered under a water tank near Sangerh Mohallah in Kohat city to take their daily dose.
Heroin addicts also regularly thronged a place behind the fertiliser plant on Rawalpindi Road close to Sheikhan and Darra Adamkhel every afternoon to purchase heroin, the residents alleged.
The area is situated in the limits of Saddar police station.
The police were unable to clear the area from armed drug peddlers, who had been selling drugs to hundreds of addicts in the settled area for the last several decades, they said.
The residents of the city demanded of the authorities to take concrete steps to eradicate drug addiction and clear the area of drug pushers.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Senate body to consult stakeholders on oil refinery

The Senate standing committee on petroleum and natural resources on Tuesday formed a three-member subcommittee to take all stakeholders on board about the selection of the site for construction of oil refinery and related issues.
The committee met here at the Commissioner’s House with its chairman, Senator Mohammad Yousuf, in the chair.
The Oil and Gas Development Company Limited officials, deputy managing director of Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited, managing director of Pakistan State Oil, representative of Hungarian MOL Company, local MNA Sheharyar Afridi, adviser to chief minister Amjid Khan Afridi, MPA Ziaullah Bangash, deputy speaker in the provincial assembly Imtiaz Shahid Qureshi, Kohat division commissioner Syed Jalaluddin and MPA Shah Faisal from Hangu, other officials concerned were in attendance.
The subcommittee comprising Senators Nabi Bangash, Talah Mahmood and Usman Saifullah has been tasked with visiting all sites of oil and gas exploration companies for discussion on the companies’ shares in the stock market, welfare programmes in the region other than royalty, LPG quota and implementation of job quota for local people in the companies in line with the Supreme Court decision.
The chair said 13 tons of LPG plant had been installed but gas was being given to outsiders.
He ordered allocation of all gas quota to the local businessmen saying such a small quantity could not be exported outside the district.
The chair expelled the SNGPL deputy managing director from the hall because managing director failed to attend the meeting despite intimation.
He said very important decisions had been taken in the meeting for which presence of signing authority was indispensable.
The committee advised the companies especially the PSO not to create confusion about the site of the construction of oil refinery and start work on it without further delay after selecting the district and site.
Source Dawn

Rules violated in Kohat varsity appointments

The syndicate of the Kohat University of Science and Technology has appointed 30 PhDs as assistant professors after approval by the selection board against the rules.
The assistant professors, who had completed their PhDs, were appointed in BPS-19 under the old Basic Pay Scale (BPS) system of appointment instead of the current tenure track (TT) system after three-day marathon meeting of the syndicate held recently, according to sources.
Under the rules, once university or degree-awarding institution adopts the TT system for appointments, PhD degree holders can’t be appointed assistant professors under the old BPS system.
The sources said the registrar of the university working in BPS-18 was also promoted to BPS-19 by the selection board and appointed in BPS system as assistant professor.
They said the registrar had been working in BPS-18 for two years and was awarded BPS-19 suddenly though under the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa University Act, 2012, the registrar should be an experienced officer of BPS-19 or above.
The sources said the registrar was serving in BPS-18 against the rules.
They said the syndicate approved the agenda in two days without putting it before the members for review 10 days before holding the meeting under the laws.
When contacted, the public relations officer of the university claimed that all appointments in the university had been made in line with the rules.
He said the syndicate met a fortnight ago with the vice chancellor in the chair and professors, assistant professors, deans and associate professors, who were changed after every three years to ensure transparency in the appointments, in attendance.The PRO said the selection board of every faculty was separate and when a large number of appointments were to be made, two PhDs were made part of the board as experts of the relevant subjects.
He said the members of the selection board, too, were changed after every three years.
Meanwhile, the students have demanded the immediate lifting of ban on their assembly and the transfer of the vice chancellor.
Source Dawn

Crackdown on power thieves in Kohat on cards

Kohat divisional commissioner Syed Jamaluddin has said a crackdown would be launched against power thieves in Kohat, Hangu and Karak districts to minimise loadshedding time.
Chairing a meeting in his office on Friday, he constituted a joint working committee comprising army officers and bureaucrats to monitor the affairs of Wapda, and directed it to submit its report every fortnight for providing relief to consumers. The committee would comprise station commander, Kohat, deputy inspector general of Kohat region, deputy commissioners and district police officers of the three districts.
Mr Jamaluddin said Wapda meter readers were putting burden of power theft on the consumers who paid bills regularly, and directed that the practice should be stopped forthwith.
He said that Wapda officials were involved in power theft and directed action against such elements. Army’s station commander, Pesco executive engineer, sub-divisional officers of Kohat, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly deputy speaker Imtiaz Shahid Qureshi, MNA Shehyar Afridi and other relevant officials were in attendance.
Mr Jamaluddin said that prior to launching of the crackdown a campaign would be started across the Kohat division to make people aware that power theft led to increased loadshedding and power breakdowns.
The commissioner asked that the Wapda officials to provide a list of the consumers who had not been paying power bills since long.
He also directed that the practice of severing connections to those consumers who paid bills regularly should be done away with and that influential people who got off the hook for stealing electricity should be taken to the task.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly deputy speaker Imtiaz Qureshi said Wapda was responsible for power theft due to inefficiency and corruption. MNA Shehyar Afridi said a transformer at Rawalpindi road grid station had been damaged months ago, but it was not repaired, which was causing fluctuation in voltage and unscheduled loadshedding.
Source Dawn

Garbage recycling plant in Kohat soon

he Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has approved a project to establish a garbage recycling plant in Kohat at a cost of Rs40 million.
District development advisory committee chairman MPA Ziaullah Bangash said this while speaking at a ceremony of handing over keys of two tractors with trolleys to the tehsil municipal administration, Kohat, here on Sunday. He hoped that with the provision of the tractors the TMA’s performance would improve to timely remove the garbage and keep the city clean.
He said that Minister for Local Bodies Inayatullah Khan had approved the tractors during his visit to the district. He said that the minister had also set aside more funds for such projects.
Chief municipal officer Mohammad Shoaib and Kohat district president of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf Hamayun Pehlwan were also present on the occasion.
Sources said that a big amount of funds allocated earlier for Solid Waste Management Project had gone down the drain. The provincial urban development board had purchased 80 kanals on Bannu road for the project, but it could not take off.
The plan was to collect garbage from the whole city and recycle it for making fertiliser. The provincial government had also appointed full staff and paid them salaries for many years though the project was never executed.
Similarly, Rs120 million released by the Asian Development Bank in 1992 for improvement of sanitation system and construction of natural fertiliser recycling plants had been rendered useless. Sources said that the treatment plant completed with a cost of Rs25 million was never made operational even for a single time during past 12 years.
The aim was to keep the city clean by upgrading the existing system to cope with problems created by increasing population for next 15 years.

Source Dawn

Kohat to have power transformer repair facility

The government will set up a workshop for repair of power transformers in Kohat district, meeting a longstanding demand of the local people.
This was announced by MNA Shehryar Afridi while launching a cleanliness drive here the other day.
District development committee chairman MPA Ziaullah Bangash, chief municipal officer Mohammad Shoeb, PTI and JI workers were also present on the occasion.
Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Afridi and Mr Bangash warned the TMA workers, especially sweepers, of strict action if they didn’t stop absenting from duties.
Mr Afridi said that due to absence of workshop for repair of power transformers people had to pay extra money from their own pockets at the private workshops. He added that Wapda officials charged Rs9,000 to Rs20,000 for repairing a faulty feeder.
Mr Afridi said that people had been demanding establishment of such a workshop in Kohat region to facilitate people of Kurram and Orakzai Agencies, Karak, Hangu and FR Kohat.
The lawmaker said that though actual cost of repair of a power feeder was much lower, Wapda staff charged people heavily.
Mr Afridi also directed the executive officer of the communication and works department to start repair of dilapidated roads in Kohat city.
Source Dawn