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January 26, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. Pakistan`s Transparency ranking worse off under PTI
• The perception of corruption in Pakistan has seen a rise for the third straight year, with the country sliding 16 places to rank 140th out of 180 countries surveyed by watchdog Transparency International (TI).
• In 2020, Pakistan`s CPI was 31 and it was ranked 124th out of 180 countries, but this year that score has fallen to 28.
• In its `2021 Corruption Perception Index`, TI noted that corruption levels remained at a standstill worldwide, with 86 per cent of countries making little to no progress in the last ten years.
• Looking at scores from previous years, Pakistan`s CPI ranking has been on the decline: in 2020, the country was ranked 124th out of 180 countries, 120th in 2019 and 117th in 2018
2. CM launches Rescue 1122 service for 79 tehsils of Punjab
• Chief Minister Usman Buzdar launched the Rescue 1122 service for 79 tehsils of the province on January 25, 2022.
• In a ceremony at the CM Office, 22 new ambulances were handed over to officers of 11 tehsils by Mr Buzdar himself in the first phase.
• Speaking on the occasion, he said new ambulances had been provided for timely delivery of emergency service as new rescue stations had been built in 79 tehsils and towns of the province. The service would start in these tehsils by June this year, he added
3. Rs220bn KCR transaction structure approved
• The government approved the transaction structure and project proposal for the construction and operation of Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) on public-private mode at an estimated cost of about Rs220bn.
• Under the transaction structure approved by the board of Public-Private Partnership Authority (P3A), the private sector will finance, develop and run the project on commercial lines. The meeting of the P3A board was presided over by Planning and Development Minister Asad Umar.
• The sources said the transaction structure proposed by the consultants/transaction advisers envisaged about Rs533bn government subsidy over the 33-year project life for electricity and major operation and maintenance (O&M) costs which was rejected by the board. The project cost was initially estimated at about Rs201bn excluding Rs20.7bn worth of loop section to avoid 22 crossings already under implementation
4. Cabinet okays Rs5bn for census, draft changes to criminal procedure law
• The federal cabinet on January 25, 2022 approved the allocation of Rs5 billion for conducting of seventh national population census in the country, which is expected to be completed by December this year.
• The cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan also approved a draft of legal reforms, making it mandatory for courts to wrap up criminal cases within nine months.
• `The cabinet endorsed the Economic Coordination Committee`s (ECC) decision for utilising Rs 5 billion to carry out fresh census in the current year,` Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry told a post-cabinet press conference
5. 89 citizens killed over blasphemy allegations since 1947: report
• As many as 89 citizens were killed in 1,415 accusations and cases of blasphemy in the country since independence, a think-tank said on January 25, 2022.
• The Centre for Research and Security Studies (CRSS) in a report stated that from 1947 to 2021, 18 women and 71 men were extra-judicially killed over blasphemy accusations. The allegations were made against 107 women and 1,308 men.
• Out of the total, 1,287 citizens were accused of committing blasphemy from 2011-21