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The Chronicle of Pakistan
Compiled by Khurram Ali Shafique
with special thanks to Aqeel Abbas Jafferi
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Jan 1 MQM chief Altaf Hussain leaves for London

Jan 7 Government signs agreement with South Korean firm Daewoo for construction of 339 km motorway, to be completed in 3 years

Jan 11 PM inaugurates construction of Lahore-Islamabad Motorway

Jan 18 G.M.Syed is placed under house arrest in Karachi

Mar 11 Jinnah Terminal at Quaid-e-Azam International Airport, Karachi, starts functioning

Mar 23 State Bank launches "no questions asked" Foreign Currency Bearer Certificates in US dollars; international uproar ensues

Apr 13 Jansher Khan wins British Open squash championship for the 1st time

Apr 23 Quota system in government jobs, first enforced in 1951, declared un-Islamic by Federal Shariat Court

Apr 23 Government closes down NPT-run Morning News for "not being feasible"

May 19 Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif meets Sindh CM Muzaffar Hussain Shah, Home Minister Chaudhry Shujaat, COAS General Asif Nawaz, Sindh Coprs Commander General Naseer Akhtar and other officials at GHQ Rawalpindi to decide on the modalities of Operation Clean-up in Sindh; operation to be carried out by the Rangers and Mehran Force with full backing by the Army

May 21 Army posted at key points in interior Sindh for operation against dacoits

Aug Pakistan wins hockey bronze in Barcelona Olympics

Sep 5 Yellow cab scheme is extended; locally assembled vehicles included, loans raised to 90 per cent of total price and foreign banks allowed to issue loans

Sep 6 Government files sedition case against The News for printing objectionable poem

Sep 22 PIA plane crashes near Kathmandu killing all 115 passengers and 12 crew

Oct 31 Arshad Jamil awarded death punishment by military court; life imprisonment for 13 co-accused


Mir Khaliur Rehman: founder and owner of Jang Group of Newspapers (Feb 25)

Jam Sadiq Ali: Sindh chief minister (Mar 4)

Nayyar Sultana: film actress (Oct 27)


Saint or sinner?

January 17 G.M.Syed's 89th birthday celebrations in Karachi provoke a new bout of outrage. As renewed calls are made for trying him for sedition, the veteran Sindhi separatist leader is incarcerated once again for publicly advocating an independent Sindhu Desh - as well as a separatist Baluchistan, Pakhtunistan and Seraiki Desh.

Tragedy at Tando Bahawal

June 13 In an unprecedented public apology, the Army GHQ has admitted that the nine people killed on June 5 were not terrorists but innocent poor haris (peasant) picked up by Major Arshad Jamil and murdered in cold blood. Further investigations revealed that the major killed the villagers in order to terrorize some women who had initiated legal action against one of his friends. The "encounter" and "recovery of arms" never took place.

Terrorists killed?

June 5 PM applauds army personnel for killing 9 terrorists in Tando Bahawal near Hyderabad; police claims to have recovered 2 kalashnikovs, a shotgun, 36 hand-granades and other explosives

Crackdown in Karachi

June 19 Daybreak As the army and Rangers stand by like indifferent spectators, Haqiqi dissidents set upon Altaf Hussain's MQM, first in Landhi and then elsewhere in the city.

The unthinkable has happened. Within the space of ten tumultuous days, Sindh's political landscape has changed beyond recognition as the army's operation in the province turns its guns on the MQM. Overnight, establishment eulogies to Altaf Hussain have been replaced by army supervised tours of captured torture camps, as a party that once held Karachi in vice-like grip suddenly finds itself on the authorities' most wanted list. (Contributed by Irfan Malik)

Floodgates of disaster

September 9 Following heavy rains, engineers at Mangla open the dam's gate without any warning to start one of the worst floods in the history of Pakistan, taking a heavy toll on human life and devastating standing crops in district Jhelum.

Subsequently, unrelenting downpours cause devastation in Hazara and Azad Kashmir.

National Conservation Strategy

The Federal Cabinet has finally approved the 406-page document prepared by a team of environmental experts led by the World Conservation Union Pakistan (IUCN-P) over the last few years.

The National Conservation Strategy (NCS) calls for integration of of environmental concerns into Pakistan's economy through conservation of natural resources, sustaianable development and improved efficiency in the management of resources. the principles of action listed in the strategy include greater public partnership in development and environmental management, merging environment and economics with the matirx of decision making, and focusing on durable improvements in the quality of life.

The cup runneth over

March 25 The highly combustile Pakistan team suddenly catches fire to fashion an improbable victory in the World Cup, defeating England by 22 runs in the final at Melbourne. Finally, the sheer virtuosity of the final has come through. Much of the credit for this goes to Captain Imran Khan and Javed Miandad who, battling age and injury, harnessed and then unleashed the explosive talent of their young "cornered tigers." (Contributed by Irfan Malik)

Earth Summit

Pakistan chairs the group of 77 Developing Nations at the UN Conference o Environment and Development (UNCED), or the Earth Summit, at Rio. Two legally binding treaties signed on this occasion are, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Cooperatives collapse

Strings of cooperative schemes, some backed by political heavyweights, collapse causing huge losses to small investors.

Sultans of swing

Summer Pakistan beat England 2-1 in the Cornhill series, but the joy of victory is dulled by accusations in the British tabloid that Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis tampered with the ball to produce the deadly "reverse swing" that tormented English batsmen all summer.


November 26 PM inaugurates PTV-2, a satellite educational channel

Songs remembered

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