WELCOME TO CSS TIMES DAY BY DAY CURRENT AFFAIRS, YOUR BEST SOURCE FOR UP-TO-DATE AND DAILY TOP CURRENT AFFAIRS 2022 FOR PREPARATION OF CSS, PMS, BANKING, NTS, RAILWAYS AND ALL COMPETITIVE EXAMS. “DAY TO DAY CURRENT AFFAIRS” BASICALLY IS TOP 10 NEWS SUMMARY ON CURRENT HAPPENINGS OF NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL IMPORTANCE FOR ALL EXAMINATIONS
October 12, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. ECP refuses to delay by-polls, Sindh LG elections
• Putting all the uncertainties to rest, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on October 11, 2022 announced that by-elections on eight national and three provincial assembly constituencies would be held as per the schedule.
• A high-level meeting chaired by Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja also decided to hold the second phase of Sindh local government elections on October 23.
• The by-polls on eight out of 10 National Assembly seats, that had fallen vacant after the resignation of PTI lawmakers were accepted by NA Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, will take place on October 16. The poll on NA-45 (Kurram) will not take place due to the security situation, while one lawmaker, Abdul Shakoor Shad, has been reinstated by the Islamabad High Court after he had challenged acceptance of his resignation
2. `Beleaguered` Punjab home minister quits
• Punjab Home Minister Mohammad Hashim on October 11, 2022 resigned for `personal reasons, with a pledge to continue serving Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf as a worker`.
• The retired colonel had been under PTI pressure, with party loyalists criticising him for `being soft on the PML-N`, which they say had been booking and picking up its workers in Punjab and getting off scot-free.
• `Of late, he was questioned by party workers and leaders alike how hundreds of containers got to Islamabad (to block the PTI threatened long march) in presence of the PTI government in Punjab and why Col Hashim had not been able to check [the practice],` a party insider told Dawn.
• Mr Hashim, whose handwritten resignation note was also shared widely on social media, had also stirred a hornet`s nest when he denied that Shahbaz Gill, chief of staff of PTI Chairman Imran Khan, had been tortured by law enforcers. But the last straw ostensibly came when he said no state resources would be used to facilitate PTI`s potential long march
3. Moody`s downgrades five major banks
• In a follow-up to Pakistan`s sovereign rating downgrade, Moody`s Investors Service on October 11, 2022 downgraded the long-term deposit ratings and long-term Foreign Currency Counter Risk Rating (CRR) to Caal from B3 of five leading Pakistani banks.
• These banks include Allied Bank Ltd (ABL), Habib Bank Ltd (HBL), MCB Bank Ltd, National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) and United Bank Ltd (UBL). `The outlook on all banks` deposit ratings remains negative,` said the New York-based rating agency in a statement.
• Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had strongly questioned the Moody`s sovereign rating downgrade, saying it was done unilaterally and without confronting the authorities even though one of the factors behind the negative rating action was the purported rescheduling of Paris Club debt which was not at all under consideration of the government of Pakistan. He also challenged the data used by Moody`s in reaching the sovereign`s rating downgrade decision
4. Civil govt main `interlocutor` in Washington-Islamabad ties: State Dept
• While Deputy Secretary Wendy Sherman met with Chief of Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa during his visit to Washington last week, the civilian government in Pakistan remains the principal `interlocutor` in bilateral ties, the US State Department said on October 11, 2022.
• At a news briefing in Washington, spokesperson Ned Price also dismissed rumors about misappropriation of flood relief funds, saying that the US closely monitors the aids it sends to a disaster-hit region.
• Responding to a question, he said that Deputy Secretary Sherman `did have the opportunity` to meet Gen Bajwa in Washington last week
5. Sri Lanka to keep `middle-income` status, but seek concessional loans
• Sri Lanka will remain a middle income country but request the World Bank to grant it some loans generally offered to poorer nations, the president`s office said on October 11, 2022, clarifying a cabinet spokesperson`s earlier comments on the matter.
• The island nation of 22 million is facing its worst economic crisis in more than seven decades and the spokesperson said earlier in the day that the government would seek to change its economic status to `low income country` for easier funding. President Ranil Wickremesinghe`s office, however, said the status change would not happen.
• `Sri Lanka will remain a middle-income country, the office said in a statement. `We will request the World Bank to grant the country eligibility to obtain loans offered by the International Development Association (IDA).` The IDA is an arm of the World Bank that helps the world`s poorest countries with the aim of reducing poverty by providing zero to low-interest loans and grants