Riaz Haq's Blog – January 2021 Archive (15)

Pakistani Universities Promoting Moringa to Fight Malnutrition

Aga Khan University and Sindh Agriculture University are jointly promoting Moringa tree planting in Pakistan's Thar desert to fight malnutrition, according to multiple media reports. Moringa has gained popularity as superfood in the West in recent years. People of drought-stricken Tharparkar have been suffering from malnutrition and disease in the middle of a long-running…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 31, 2021 at 8:30am — 13 Comments

Lina Khan: Pakistani-American Lawyer Fighting Big Tech Monopolies

Pakistani-American Lina Khan is seen as the front-runner for appointment to the US Federal Trade  Commission (FTC) as a commissioner in the  Biden administration.  She is a Columbia University Law professor who specializes in anti-trust law.  

Lina's 2017 seminal paper entitled "Amazon's Anti-trust Paradox" broke new ground in the application of anti-trust law against powerful technology monopolies like Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Twitter. Traditionally, the US anti-trust…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 28, 2021 at 5:30pm — 6 Comments

India Republic Day: Modi's Hindutva Threatens Secular Constitution and National Unity

India's secular constitution came into effect on January 26, 1950, a day that is celebrated as Republic Day. Today, the national integrity and the secular foundations of the Republic of India are under threat from its current Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi whose leader Madhav Golwalkar wrote: “The non-Hindu peoples in Hindusthan must either adopt the Hindu culture and language, must learn to respect and hold in reverence Hindu religion” or “may stay in the country, wholly subordinated to…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 25, 2021 at 11:00am — 9 Comments

Pakistan Tech Exports Continue to Soar: Up 40% in last 6 Months Amid COVID19 Pandemic

Pakistan's technology exports are continuing to soar amid the Covid19 pandemic. Tech exports jumped 43% in December, 2020 and 40% in July-December 2020 period over the same period in 2019. This is a rapid acceleration from 21% increase in all of Fiscal Year 2020 (July-June 2020) over FY 2019. Tech exports (up 40%) far outpaced overall exports (up 5.1%) in this period. 

The modest 5.1% increase in Pakistan's overall exports is still commendable in the midst of the global economic…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 24, 2021 at 4:37pm — 13 Comments

Raast Aims to Create Pakistan's Unified Digital Payments Infrastructure

Pakistan's central bankers have taken the plunge into the world of digital payments with their own offering: Raast. It aims to create an instant low-cost payment system that can seamlessly and securely connect government entities, a variety of banks, including microfinance banks (MFBs),  electronic money institutions (EMIs) and State Bank authorized payment service providers (PSPs) like 1Link and NIFT which may choose to take advantage of it.  Currency and coins in circulation account for…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 23, 2021 at 1:30pm — 48 Comments

Pulwama Attack: Did Modi Order False Flag Operation in Kashmir?

On 14 February 2019, a terrorist attack near Pulwama in Kashmir killed 40 Indian soldiers. It has now come to light that Indian TV anchor Arnab Goswami had prior knowledge of it. He wrote in a WhatApp message to BARC TV rating company head Pratho Dasgupta on that day that his channel was “20 min ahead on the biggest terrorist attack of the year in Kashmir”. "This attack we have won like crazy", he added. Arnab Goswami has close ties to the nation's Hindu Nationalist Prime Minister Narendra…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 21, 2021 at 10:30am — 21 Comments

British Forensic Audit: Nawaz Sharif Family Owns Assets Worth $820.8 Million

Forensic audit of Nawaz Sharif family's assets has put its value at $820.8 Million, according to Broadsheet Award ordered by arbitrator Sir Anthony Evans. It was disclosed in documents released by Broadsheet LLC and Pakistan government. The forensic audit was conducted by Stroz Friedberg audit firm based in the United Kingdom. It was hired by Facebook to conduct forensic audit of…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 19, 2021 at 4:30pm — No Comments

Will the New Silk Road Help Revive the Islamic Golden Age?

National Geographic's Paul Salopek recently came upon a site in Pakistan's Salt Range where Muslim scientist Abu-Raihan Al-Biruni accurately measured the size of the earth in the 11th century. In it, Salopek sees the revival of the Islamic Golden Age. He characterizes the ancient Silk Road of as "dynamic but collapsed experiment in multilateralism". He thinks the revival of the Islamic Golden Age is…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 18, 2021 at 5:00pm — 18 Comments

Overseas Pakistanis Rescuing Pakistan Economy Yet Again

Pakistani diaspora sent home $14.2 billion in remittances in July-December 2020, up 25% from the same period in 2019. Pakistanis settled in the United Kingdom and the United States increased their remittances by 52% and 47% respectively in this period, helping Pakistan achieve a record $1.8 billion current account surplus in the first 6 months of the ongoing fiscal year…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 16, 2021 at 6:00pm — 13 Comments

Oxford Disinfo Report: India, Pakistan Among Top Nations With "High Cyber Capacity"

Oxford University's report on global disinformation ranks India and Pakistan among top 17 "high cyber troop capacity" countries. The report defines "cyber troop capacity" in terms of numbers of people and the size of budget allocated to psychological operations or information warfare. "Cyber troop activity" as defined by the report includes social media manipulation by governments and political parties, and the various private companies and other organizations they work with to spread…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 15, 2021 at 10:30am — 9 Comments

US Needs to Promote Democracy At Home!

About a week before the world witnessed the storming of the US Capitol by an angry mob on January 6, 2020, the US Congress allocated $15 million for "democracy programs" in Pakistan as part of its latest Coronavirus Relief Bill. Should charity start at home? Should America prioritize democracy at home? With 64% of Republicans supporting Trump's false claim of "stolen election", has pro-Trump…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 11, 2021 at 8:30am — 32 Comments

Karachi-born NED University Alum Leads Mercedes Entry into Electric Vehicles Market

Pakistani-German Sajjad Khan is leading German luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz's entry into the electric vehicle market with six new all-electric “EQ” models, according to media reports.  Sajjad Khan was born in Karachi and graduated from NED Engineering University with a degree in…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 7, 2021 at 2:00pm — 4 Comments

Pakistan Among World's Largest Food Producing Countries

Pakistan's agriculture output is the 10th largest in the world. The country produces large and growing quantities of cereals, meat, milk, fruits and vegetables. Currently, Pakistan produces about 38 million tons of cereals (mainly wheat, rice and corn), 17 million tons of fruits and vegetables, 70 million tons of sugarcane, 60 million tons of milk and 4.5 million tons of meat.  Total value of the nation's agricultural output exceeds $50 billion.  Improving agriculture inputs and modernizing…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 5, 2021 at 5:00pm — 177 Comments

Modi's Vaccine Nationalism: India's Hasty Approval of Homegrown COVID19 Vaccine

Indian drug regulator has approved COVAXIN, a Covid19 vaccine developed by Bharat Biotech.  The approval has been granted without completing large-scale phase 3 trials in India, according to media reports. It is India's first indigenous vaccine co-developed with Pennsylvania-based startup Ocugen. Ocugen, led by Indian-American scientists, does not currently sell any products.  India is the world's second worst-hit country by the global coronavirus pandemic.  Critics say the hasty approval of…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 4, 2021 at 12:53pm — 42 Comments

Pakistan: The Year 2020 in Review

The COVID19 pandemic has been the biggest story in Pakistan and the rest of the world. It has complicated Pakistan's economic recovery as did the ever-present threat of political instability posed by the opposition parties trying to take advantage of the crisis. Gallup Poll data shows that 65% of Pakistanis are happy despite hardships of the coronavirus pandemic. On the external front, Pakistan faced India's massive global disinformation campaign against it. The year 2020 was a tough year…

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Added by Riaz Haq on January 2, 2021 at 11:00am — 17 Comments

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    Blog Posts

    Are Some Pakistanis Feeding into Indian Delusions of Grandeur?

    Many Pakistanis are singing effusive praises of India on social media platforms and racking up millions of views, according to a report in the Indian  mainstream media. These Pakistanis are boosting their earnings by feeding into the Indians' delusions. The "India Today" report claims that, in the last 6…

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    Posted by Riaz Haq on June 20, 2024 at 9:00am — 5 Comments

    Agriculture: A Rare Bright Spot in Pakistan's Economy

    Pakistan's agriculture sector grew 6.3% in 2023-24, far outpacing the overall economy that grew just 2.38%, according to the Economic Survey of Pakistan 2023-24.  This is good news for about 40% of the country's population working in the agriculture sector. By contrast, India's agriculture growth slowed to …

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    Posted by Riaz Haq on June 13, 2024 at 9:30am — 4 Comments

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