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Parliament of Pakistan

Pakistan 24/7, an alternative media that focuses on rising issues and developments in the region of Pakistan, is now live.

Pakistan 24/7 is powered by GBee News.

Pakistan 27/7 Staff keeps you updated with the breaking news and the latest stories from around Pakistan, Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.

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Cricket

Test Cricket Returns to Rawalpindi after 15 years!

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Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium

When the first ball will be bowled at the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium on 11 November 2019, it will be the first time in 15 years when a test cricket will be played on this ground. This will also be the first time in a decade when test cricket returns to Pakistan.

After a tragic attack on Sri Lankan Cricket Team in Lahore in 2009, doors for international cricket remained closed for Pakistan as the nation continued its War on Terror .

Although One Day International cricket returned to Pakistan much earlier despite reservations from its neighboring and traditional rival India; Pakistan had to take a step further to make sure a test playing nation agrees to play the longer format of the game in Pakistan.

Ironically, the last test match to be played at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium was between Pakistan and India from 13 to 16 April 2004. This match will also be remembered for the fact that Rahul Dravid scored his career best of 270 at this very same venue. Thanks to this glorious knock by Rahul Dravid, India won the match by an innings and 131 runs.

Another interesting fact that needs an applaud is that Sri Lanka was the last guest team to play test cricket on Pakistani soil before their team was attacked by terrorists near Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. The Sri Lankan Cricket team returns after a decade to play two test matches, first at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium (popularly known as the Pindi Cricket Stadium in the twin cities) from 11 to 16 December while the second from 19 to 24 December at National Cricket Stadium in Karachi.

Having lived in the twin cities for over a decade now, like many cricket fans, this is quite an emotional moment for me to see international cricket being played in the neighborhood. Pakistan’s successful campaign against terrorism is bearing its fruit and hopefully this tour would be the first of many more to come.

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Climate

Lahore 2nd most polluted city in the world according to Air Quality Index (AQI)

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Lahore Smog

Air Quality Index (AQI) in its latest publication has ranked Lahore as the second most polluted city on the planet. The capital of Pakistan‘s Punjab province is only behind its neighboring country’s capital city of Delhi. In the latest rankings of 94 cities by Air Quality Index, Delhi is on the top of the list with a US AQI of 305 while Kobe, Japan, is on the bottom with a US AQI of just 4. Lahore’s US AQI has been listed 198.

Top 10 most polluted cities in the world according to Air Quality Index (AQI)

The report further mentions a humidity of 71%, wind speeds at 1.4 km/h and a pressure of 1024 mb in Lahore. 198 US AQI is considered unhealthy.

AQI, or Air Quality Index, is a system for translating sometimes confusing or unintuitive pollutant concentration measurements, into one easy-to-understand scale to clearly represent the health risk posed by ambient air pollution. The index formula usually considers up to 6 main pollutants (PM2.5, PM10, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and ground level ozone), and calculates the respective health risk (or AQI number) for each one at any given time. The overall AQI number at a given moment is dictated by the “riskiest” pollutant, with the highest AQI number.

AirVisual uses the US EPA National Ambient Air Quality Standards to calculate AQI and attribute code color. Both US and Chinese AQI systems are available on the AirVisual app and Node.

The index ranges from 0 to 500, where high index values indicate higher levels of air pollution and higher potential for adverse health effects. Any value larger than 300, for example, is considered to be hazardous, while an AQI value of 0-50, on the other hand, represents good air quality.

AQI is computed in different ways around the world. China and America have the two most widely used systems. Both are calculated weighting the six key pollutants. The results of these two functions differ only in AQI scores of 200 and below.

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Law and Order

Supreme Court of Pakistan suspends extension of COAS

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General Qamar Javed Bajwa
Photo: AFP

The Supreme Court of Pakistan has suspended the extension of Chief of Army Staff (COAS) in what many analysts consider as ‘unprecedented’. Prime Minister Imran Khan had approved the three-year extension of Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

According to Express Tribune, the development came after the chief justice took up a withdrawal application of a petition challenging the army chief’s tenure extension. Justice Khosa rejected the application and took up the petition under Article 184 (3) of the Constitution under public interest.

The 3-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Asif Saeed Khosa suspended the extension of COAS until Wednesday.

According to a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office, the notification for the reappointment of General Qamar Javed Bajwa as Chief of Army Staff (COAS) for another 3-year tenure was issued on August 19, 2019. General Qamar was set to retire on November 29 on completion of his three-year term. However, after the extension, he would serve as army chief until November 2022.

Defending the move, Attorney General Anwar Mansoor Khan said the Army chief’s tenure had not been extended without securing President Arif Alvi’s approval. “The summary has been approved by the federal cabinet,” he added.

However, the court questioned why a majority of the cabinet had not approved the extension, as only 11 of 25 members voted in favor of it.

The court also questioned the reasoning behind the extension. “Dealing with regional security situation is the job of the Army as an institution, not just of an officer’s,” said the top judge during the proceedings. “If the regional security situation reasoning is accepted, then every Army officer would want a re-appointment.”

The court has issued notices to the defense ministry, the federal government and Gen. Bajwa for the next hearing, which will take place on Wednesday.

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