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November 30, 2019: National Current Affairs
1. Parliament`s body to interview judges for high courts
• The Parliamentary Committee on Appointment of Judges on November 29, 2019 amended its rules to invite candidates for judicial posts in the provincial and Islamabad high courts.
• Earlier, the parliamentary committee, in the wake of a judicial order during the period of former chief justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, had virtually become a rubber stamp. The apex court while examining the scope of the committee held that recommendations of the Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) would stand approved if the committee could not consider a name within 14 days. The former CJP had also made it difficult for the parliamentary committee to reject the JCP`s recommendations.
• As per the amended rules, in case of non-appearance before the parliamentary committee, the nomination of a judge will be deemed to have been cancelled. The committee also decided to invite three nominees recommended by the JCP for the vacant positions in the Islamabad High Court. The committee will meet again on Dec 4. Besides considering the names of lawyers for the IHC posts, it will also elect its new chairman to preside over meetings for a period of six months.
2. Entire top bureaucracy reshuffled in Punjab
• Acting desperately, the Punjab government, being accused of inaction and inefficiency, on November 29, 2019 changed almost the entire top bureaucracy in Punjab, including 31 secretaries (home and additional chief secretary among them), eight out of nine commissioners and 31 deputy commissioners.
• Principal secretaries to the governor and the chief minister were also changed.
• Political and administrative circles have been accusing Chief Minister Usman Buzdar of stalling activity in the province. Media has also been hinting at prime minister`s reported insistence to carry on with his hand-picked chief minister from south Punjab despite concerns being shown even within his party over the `slow motions` of the provincial PTI government.
• Administrative officers and political circles termed Friday`s tsunami of reshuffle a mad rush to divert attention from the performance of the PTI political leadership. They also apprehended that changing of officials from one place to another would not do any good to the province or its people.
3. High-level shuffle as 10 promoted to BPS-22
• The federal government November 29, 2019 carried out transfers and postings of 10 senior civil servants after their promotion to BPS-22.
• Additional Secretary to Prime Minister Muhammad Ali Shehzada has been transferred and posted as special secretary Establishment Division. Allah Bakhsh Malik was transferred and posted as Secretary Health. Muhammad Ayub Chaudhry has been transferred and posted as Additional Secretary Petroleum. Jawad Paul has been transferred and posted as additional secretary at PM Office. Amir Ashraf Kh has been transferred and posted as secretary climate change while Syed Pervaiz Abbas has been transferred and posted as secretary economic affairs.
• From the Information Group, Zahida Perveen has been made full secretary information. She was serving as additional secretary in charge at the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
4. IGP changes half of police command after assuming charge
• A day after assuming the charge, newly-appointed IGP Ghulam Dastgir has changed almost half command of the police force, including four regional police officers (RPOs), the Lahore capital city police officer (CCPO) and 19 district police officers (DPOs) on November 29, 2019.
• The IGP also surrendered services of six other police officers of BPS-20, BPS-19 and BPS-18 from Punjab to the Establishment Division, Islamabad.
• The transfer of Rahim Yar Khan DPO Amir Taimur, the relative of Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, remained the talk of the town.
• The major initiative was taken in respect of change of command of Lahore police by making transfer of CCPO BA Nasir and Operations DIG Ashfaq Ahmad Khan. Both officers have been replaced by Information Technology DIG Zulfiqar Hameed and DIG Logistics and Procurement Rai Babar Saeed, respectively.
5. PM to attend Kuala Lumpur summit on Ummah`s problems
• Prime Minister Imran Khan would visit Malaysia next month to attend the first Kuala Lumpur Summit that would discuss Ummah`s problems.
• The invitation for the Summit was delivered to PM Khan by Malaysian prime minister`s special envoy, Deputy Foreign Minister Marzuki Bin Haji Yahya on Friday.
• The summit being held in the Malaysian capital from Dec 18 to 20 is being attended by Indonesia, Turkey, Pakistan and Qatar in addition to host Malaysia. The event`stheme is `The Role of Development in Achieving National Sovereignty`.
• The Summit is aimed at understanding the problems afflicting the global Muslim community and suggesting the way towards addressing them.
6. Farogh Naseem returns to cabinet
• MQM-Pakistan lawmaker Barrister Farogh Naseem was sworn in as federal minister on November 29, 2019.
• President Dr Arif Alvi administered the oath to him at a ceremony held in Aiwan-e-Sadr. It has not yet been announced which portfolio he would be given.
7. CM re-launches BMP promotion process after 20 years
• Chief Minister Punjab Sardar Usman Khan Buzdar has fulfilled his promise to promote Border Military Police (BMP) Dera Ghazi Khan’s personnel
• The promotion process which was stopped since last 20 years has been restarted on the direction of CM Punjab. In the first phase, on the recommendation of Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC), Deputy Commissioner/ Commandant BMP DG Khan Capt (r) Waqas Rashid has promoted six BMP officials from post of Daffedars BMP (BS-09) to post of Jamadar BMP (BS-14).
• Deputy Commissioner/Commandant BMP DG Khan Capt (r) Waqas Rashid said that six Daffedars namely Karim Nawaz, Saeed Ahmed, Muhammad Zaman, Naseem Ahmd, Muhammad Hashim and Iftekhar Ahmed Khan have been promoted as Jamadar in compliance of notification of the Punjab Government Home Department of dated 21-10-2019 and direction of Commissioner DG Khan of dated 13-11-2019. Promotion process has completed through DPC in proper legal way
8. Iraqi PM agrees to resign after Sistani`s call
• Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi announced his resignation on November 29, 2019 after the country`s top cleric urged lawmakers to reconsider their support for a government rocked by weeks of deadly anti-establishment unrest.
• The move was the latest twist in an unprecedented crisis for war-weary Iraq, which has struggled to recover from decades of conflict, civil unrest and sanctions.
• The departure of Abdul Mahdi could be a blow for Iranian influence after Iran`s militia allies and its own commanders intervened last month to keep the premier in place despite mass anti-government unrest.
• Iraq`s biggest unrest for years pits protesters from Shia heartlands in Baghdad and the south against the ruling elite seen as a pawn of Iran.
9. In Afghanistan, Trump announces fresh Taliban talks
• US President Donald Trump paid a surprise Thanksgiving visit to Afghanistan, where he announced the US and Taliban have been engaged in ongoing peace talks and said he believes the Taliban wants a ceasefire.
• In his first trip to the site of America’s longest war, Trump arrived at Bagram Air Field shortly after 8:30 pm local time Thursday and spent more than two-and-a-half hours on the ground, serving turkey, thanking the troops and sitting down with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.
• As per tradition, reporters were under strict instructions to keep the trip a secret to ensure his safety in the country. About 12,000 US forces remain in Afghanistan
10. Famous free solo climber falls to death
• World-renowned American free solo climber has died attempting to descend the side of a cliff face. Brad Gobright, 31, fell around 300m (1,000 ft) to his death in El Potrero Chico in northern Mexico.
• His companion, fellow climber Aidan Jacobson, 26, fell a shorter distance and survived with injuries.
• Gobright was best known for free soloing, or climbing without any safety gear, but at the time the two were abseiling, a technique using ropes. Abseiling accidents are believed to be the most common cause of fatalities in the sport
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