Thursday, January 03, 2008

Pakistan: An update

Flour crisis aggravates in country... shop shelves are bare, and where you can find it the prices rising, there's concern about hoarding and production disruptions due to the riots. And someone blew up an electrical tower resulting in "load shedding" or "cutting off the electric current on certain lines when the demand becomes greater than the supply. Looks like the load shedding is widespread and a real pain (and probably a part of normal life in Pakistan)

Businessmen are expressing fears that violence will return but, there was also a confidence surge in the stock market. With gradual improvement in the political situation – confidence is seemingly returning to the Stock Exchange – as President Musharraf's speech eased investor concerns pushing the benchmark index to post its biggest gain of 643 points.

Hanging Mahmouds... they really weren't ready to hold elections January 8. Month needed to replace destroyed ballot boxes in Sindh.

Speaking of Mahmouds...for crying out loud, what's the Iranian foreign minister doing here? Iran's Foreign Minister arrives. Visiting Bhutto's grave if you can believe that one - why, so he can stand there and laugh and point? He will also be meeting with; "President Pervez Musharraf, Caretaker Prime Minister Mohammadmian Soomro and Foreign Minister Inamul Haq".

21,000 booked for rioting in Nawabshah...Meanwhile, normalcy returned to the city, its suburbs and other towns and villages of the district

The situation remains calm in Sindh... "Army in close coordination with rangers and police is constantly monitoring the criminal elements who exploited the situation and indulged in looting after the demise of Ms Benazir Bhutto... but there's a lot of damage from the rioting.

In addition, Pakistani Railways announces suspension of 11 trains and announces heavy losses, as well.

The riots cost PR billions of rupees as the miscreants burnt and damaged over 63
railway stations, 29 locomotives, 31 level crossings, 170 coaches, 18 bridges
and 5 cranes. The other items included 27 block instruments and one VHF tower
between Rohri and Sukkur causing complete disruption in Railways communication
between Sindh and parts of the country. At 16 different locations, the rail
tracks were either up-rooted or badly damaged by the mobs, bringing the train
operations at halt in Karachi and Sukkur divisions of Sindh.
The train service to Karachi and Quetta has resumed.

As the children of Benazir Bhutto have arrived in Dubai and are mourning their mother.

The teenage son of assassinated Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto received condolences for his slain mother in Dubai yesterday. Dozens of mainly Pakistani expatriates paid their respects to Bilawal Bhutto Zardari at his family residence in Dubai and joined him in mourning prayers.