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Blood samples of Dhaka cafe attackers handed over to FBI

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Bangladesh has handed over blood samples of the Gulshan cafe terror attackers to the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for testing, police here said on Friday.

The samples were handed over on Friday morning, Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) Deputy Commissioner Masudur Rahman told the Dhaka Tribune.

The doctors collected hair and blood samples from the bodies of the six men who laid siege to the cafe to ascertain whether they had been under the influence of drugs during the attack on the cafe, the Daily Star reported.

A forensic team of Dhaka Medical College Hospital collected the samples on request of the Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime unit of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police.

The move came amid media reports that militants, especially members of the Islamic State, are known to be popping addictive pills which help “fuel their fury” before carrying out terror attacks.

The six terrorists, who were shot dead on July 2 by security forces, include the cafe’s pizza chef Saiful Islam, who investigators say was one of the attackers. His family has claimed he was innocent, the Daily Star reported.

Blood samples of the family members of the six men were also collected on Wednesday at the lab of the Criminal Investigation Department in the capital.

On July 1, terrorists stormed the Holey Artisan Bakery in the high security diplomatic zone in Gulshan, killing 20 hostages, mostly foreigners and including an Indian woman. Two police officials were also killed.

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South Asia

Nasirul Mulk takes oath as caretaker Pakistan PM to hold transparent elections

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Islamabad, June 1 : Retired Justice Nasirul Mulk took oath as Pakistan’s seventh caretaker Prime Minister at a ceremony on Friday, hours after the National Assembly was formally dissolved to hold free and fair elections.

President Mamnoon Hussain administered the oath to Mulk, who was unanimously nominated for the post by both the government and opposition, with former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi describing the retired judge as a someone whose appointment “no one would object to”, reports Dawn news.

The oath-taking ceremony comes hours after the third National Assembly in a row managed to complete its five-year constitutional term.

However, it is only the second National Assembly under civilian rule which completed its tenure, as the one which came into existence in 2002 continued to function under the former President Pervez Musharraf.

The three National Assemblies have elec­ted seven prime ministers over the last 16 years, reports Dawn.

Justice Mulk is one of the seven judges who signed a restraining order on November 3, 2007, when Musharraf imposed emergency and forcibly sent the judges home.

(IANS)

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Pakistan Supreme Court orders ex-PM Nawaz Sharif removed as head of his political party – judge

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ISLAMABAD: In another blow to the ruling PML-N, the Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday ruled that a disqualified individual cannot head a political party.

The apex court elaborated that a person disqualified under Article 62, 63 of the Constitution can not head the party. As a result of this verdict, all decisions taken by Nawaz as PML-N’s president stand null and void.

As a consequence, Senate tickets issued by Nawaz are also declared void, throwing the fate of March 3 Senate elections in doubt.

The Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar concluded on Thursday the hearings of several petitions against the recently-passed Elections Act 2017.

A three-member bench had been hearing several petitions challenging specific clauses of the act that led to Nawaz Sharif’s appointment as party president following his dismissal as prime minister last year.

During today’s hearing, the chief justice remarked that the country’s leadership is respectable, adding that the media misreported the court’s remarks.

Chief Justice Nisar also observed that there is no reason for the apex court to use words like thief, adding that the fallout of the issue is unacceptable.

Addressing the Pakistan Peoples Party counsel Latif Khosa during the hearing, the chief justice remarked that there would be a difference in rallies held by you or [slain party leader and former prime minister] Benazir Bhutto.

Another petitioner’s counsel, Farogh Naseem, argued that there is a precedent of a court order against a political party’s head.

The chief justice remarked that in other countries intra-party elections are held but the situation is different in Pakistan.

“The party head is an important position,” the chief justice observed, adding that in Pakistan people are willing to sacrifice their lives for their leaders.

Disqualification to party president
Following Nawaz’s disqualification as prime minister in July 2017 in the Panama Papers case, the ruling party managed to amend the Constitution to allow the former premier to retain his chairmanship of the PML-N.

As a result, the Elections Act 2017 was passed by Parliament bringing Nawaz back as the party president despite his disqualification from the National Assembly.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan, Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid, MNA Jamshaid Dasti, National Party and the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), among others, challenged the law for allowing a disqualified parliamentarian to become a party head.

The petitions, challenging specific clauses of the Elections Act 2017, state that Nawaz’s appointment as party president is in violation of Clause 5 of the Political Parties Order 2002 and Article 17 of the Constitution.

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Imran Khan gets married for a third time, marries faith healer Bushra Maneka.

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Imran Khan is no more single, and it’s official. Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has confirmed that their chairman has tied the knot for a third time.

Photographs of Imran Khan’s Nikah with Bushra Wattoo have been unveiled. The photographs show Imran and a veiled Bushra along with several others, including PTI leaders Awn Chaudhry and Zulfi Bukhari.

On January 3, media was abuzz with reports of the PTI chief having contracted a third Nikah with the lady he used to visit for spiritual guidance.

But the party said that the Nikah ceremony was solemnised in Lahore on Sunday by Mufti Saeed.

Party spokesperson Fawad Chaudhry has wished the couple a happy married life.

PHOTO: EXPRESS

After much drama, Imran had broken his silence about his third marriage last month, clarifying that he had only sent a wedding proposal to Bushra and was awaiting her response.

According to a statement issued by the spokesperson for the PTI chief, Imran had sent a marriage proposal and the lady had sought time to consult her family, especially her children, before making any decision.

The statement insisted that the PTI chief would announce it publicly if Bushra accepted the marriage proposal.

PHOTO: EXPRESS

Last month, a local newspaper had claimed that Imran had already married for a third time and the woman in question was someone he used to visit for spiritual guidance.

The report also claimed that the wedding was held in Lahore on January 1 and was attended by Imran’s close aides.

In response, the PTI said an extremely private and sensitive matter was made the subject of an erroneous story leading to all manner of public conjecture.

“This has put an unacceptable burden, especially on the children of Bushra and Khan, who have had to learn of such a private and intimate issue from the media,” the statement said.

Stressing the need for restraint, Imran had urged the media to “give the two families, especially the children, their privacy”.

Imran Khan was previously married twice, but neither of his marriages lasted. He married Jemima Goldsmith, a British socialite, in 1995. The relationship ended in divorce in 2004. He then married journalist Reham Khan in 2015, but the marriage ended after just 10 months.

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