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Monthly Archives: DECEMBER 2019


REMEMBRANCE
A Bhutto, who was not that 'Benazir'
28.12.19 - Markandey Katju
A Bhutto, who was not that 'Benazir'



IN THE VIDEO on YouTube titled ‘Remembering Benazir Bhutto’ Raza Rumi, whom I otherwise respect for his liberal and secular views,  and his colleague in Ailia Zehra made wholly inane comments on the 12th death anniversary of late Benazir Bhutto which I did not expect from a senior journalist of his kind.

Raza has praised late Benazir (The Arabic-Persian word Benazir means 'unique') Bhutto sky high, but was there really anything in her? I regret I found nothing, unless being the daughter of ZA Bhutto makes her great, just as being the son of Indira Gandhi made Rajiv Gandhi great, and being the son of Sonia Gandhi makes Rahul Gandhi great.

Raza waxed eloquent on Benazir’s legacy, making it sound as if it is Lenin’s or Mustafa Kemal’s legacy. He spoke about Benazir’s struggle to restore democracy in Pakistani, her struggle against ‘intehapasandi’ (extremism) etc and her introduction of the Lady Health Workers Scheme, Benazir Income Support Programme and other pro-poor schemes.
 
He contrasted Benazir with Imran Khan, alleging that while the latter got his opponents like Nawaz Sharif jailed, she forgave her enemies and believed in reconciliation with them, and working by consensus. 

Raza also spoke of Benazir’s ‘social contract’ (thus elevating her to the status of Locke and Rousseau) and her policy of decentralisation.

I am afraid a closer study of Benazir shows that Raza’s fulsome praise holds no water.

Benazir’s apparent love for the poor was like Indira Gandhi’s slogan ‘Gharibi Hatao’, or like her father’s slogan ‘Roti, kapda aur makaan’, vote catching gimmicks amounting to nothing. Benazir, like her father and Indira Gandhi, lived always in great luxury and comfort, and her professed love for the poor reminds one of Akbar Allahabadi’s sher :

 "Qaum ke gham mein dinner khate hain hukkam ke saath
   Ranj leader ko bahut hai, magar aaraam ke saath"

There were many allegations of corruption against Benazir and her husband Asif Zardari (in pic), which Raza inexplicably (or conveniently) ignored.
 
For instance, after a 5 years investigation a Swiss court in 2003 found both Benazir and her husband guilty of a huge amount of money laundering, and gave them suspended jail sentences of 6 months each and ordered each to pay £ 8 million to the Pakistan Govt.  A diamond necklace worth £ 117,000 exposed Benazir’s money laundering trail.
 
In her second term as PM she had enriched herself and her husband with kickbacks from a govt contract with 2 Swiss companies, SGS and Cotechna. The money was paid to 2 companies in the British Virgin Islands, Bomer Finances owned by Asif Zardari (Benazir sharing its assets with him) which received $ 8.2 million, and Nassam Overseas, whose ostensible owner is Nasir Husain, Benazir’s brother in law, which received $ 3.8 million.

Evidence of Benazir’s role in Bomer emerged from her visit to London where she bought a diamond necklace from Knightsbridge Jewellers for £ 117,000. This necklace was later found in a Swiss bank vault, and this is reminiscent of the Diamond Necklace Affair in France before the French Revolution of 1789.

Benazir had a 15 bedroom Rockwood Estate in Surrey in England (in pic) valued at £ 3.5 million, and she is believed to have owned 4 other properties in London.
 
Jeremy Carver, the lawyer of the Pakistan Govt, said there were at least half a dozen international cases of corruption pending against Benazir and Zardari in Switzerland, USA and Pakistan. Zardari became well known as Mr 10 %.

This may be only the tip of the iceberg of Benazir’s humonguous corruption. In her second term as PM she appointed her husband as Investment Minister, Chief of Intelligence Bureau and Director General of Federal Investigative Agency. This gave him a monopoly on the country’s gold imports, which netted him a cool $10 million. 

Allen writes "measures like these reflected how Benazir had given up all her previous ideals and simply caved in to the culture of corruption, indeed excelled in it, as she excelled in so many other areas".

John Burns, a journalist of the New York Times, investigated the business transactions of Benazir and her husband, exposing the mammoth scale of their corruption. By 1996 their takings from these deals were estimated at $1.5 billion. In 1996 Transparency International ranked Pakistan as the world’s second most corrupt country.  

In the 1990s during Benazir’s term as PM GDP declined to 3-4%, poverty rose by 33%, and the number of Pakistanis living in absolute poverty doubled.

And yet Raza in his wisdom seeks to paint Benazir as some kind of benevolent angel, whose assassination was an irreparable and colossal loss to Pakistan.

As regards the Lady Health Workers Scheme, it was no doubt trumpeted with great fanfare, like Arvind Kejriwal’s mohalla clinics, but it is reported that the health workers are on strike for not receiving regular salaries, job security and attacks on them. And as regards the much touted Benazir Income Support Programme, it is well known that it is riddled with corruption.

Raza describes Benazir as a democrat. But the truth was exposed by her own mother Nusrat, whom she removed as Hony Chairperson of PPP when Nusrat joined hands with her son Murtaza (later killed in mysterious circumstances).
 
Nusrat said about her daughter "She talks a lot about democracy, but she is a little dictator".

As for her alleged support of women’s issues, the fact is she never got the Hudood and Zina Ordinances repealed.
 
And as for her ‘liberalism’ she did not get repealed the Second Constitutional Amendment declaring Ahmadis non Muslims, which her father, who posed to be a great fighter for the people but got enacted for his political gain, thus throwing Ahmadis to the wolves. Nor did she get repealed the blasphemy law (section 295 C PPC) which is used to persecute minorities, nor the law which Gen Zia enacted to persecute Ahmadis for ‘posing to be Muslims’.

I think Raza and Ailia need a second look at the late lamented Daughter of the East.

 
 

Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India


 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

Most shared Punjab Today articles:

 

KYUN KE HUM HAIN HINDUSTANI

Three Women of 1984

 FROM 1984 TO BARGARI - Hurt & angry, we’ve tried rage, anger. Did we miss karuna?   

REVISITING 1984 – RIOT AROUND A POLE     

KARTARPUR SAHIB: A CLARION CALL FOR PEACE IN AN AGE OF CYNICISM

If it could happen to Arun Shourie, imagine what could they do to you?

Healers & Predators – The Doctor is In, & is very corrupt

Amarinder, Badals, AAP — Every party in Punjab is now an Akali Dal

Welcome to 1947. Happy Independence Day. Would you like to step out?

In Pakistan, a donkey pays for democracy – bleeding, its nostrils ripped apart

WOOING THE PANTH: Amarinder a little less Congressy, Akali Dal a little more saffron

"Captain Amarinder Singh ji” and "Rahul”: Reading Sign Language In A Relationship

The Comrade In Punjab - Lost, Irrelevant, Asleep, Even Bored!

WATERS ROYALTY - The Loot that Rajasthan Committed

AMARINDER GOVT's LOVE FOR FARMERS, AND MY DAD's FOR HIS SCOOTER

OF SUNNY KID & HORSE SENSE: The Punjab-Punjab Ties  

TRUDEAU VISIT AND RIGHT-WING MEDIA MACHINE         

 OF NIRMAL SINGH'S EYES 

Mr. CHIEF MINISTER, PLEASE CALL OFF JANUARY 7 FUNCTION         

MR PRESIDENT, PLEASE TAKE BACK HIS GALLANTRY MEDAL       

A SAFFRON JOURNEY VIA CANADA

BAD, BAD WOMAN!

 


 

_______________________________________________________________

Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

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Comment by: Dr Craig Parrish

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DR Craig Parrish
Call / WhatsApp: +919047292804
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We are in urgent need of a kidney donor for a good amount of 7Cr (Advance money 3.5cr) in India, Interested person kindly Contact us now..
DR Craig Parrish
Call / WhatsApp: +919047292804
Email- craigparrishkidneyfoundation@yahoo.com

We are in urgent need of a kidney donor for a good amount of 7Cr (Advance money 3.5cr) in India, Interested person kindly Contact us now..
DR Craig Parrish
Call / WhatsApp: +919047292804
Email- craigparrishkidneyfoundation@yahoo.com

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Call / WhatsApp: +919047292804
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Call / WhatsApp: +919047292804
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DR Craig Parrish
Call / WhatsApp: +919047292804
Email- craigparrishkidneyfoundation@yahoo.com

reply


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THE PROSECUTED MINORITY
The barbaric persecution of Ahmadiyas in Pakistan
23.12.19 - Markandey Katju
The barbaric persecution of Ahmadiyas in Pakistan



AHMADIYAS are a tiny peaceful community of about 5 million in Pakistan,(which has a total population of over 200 million) who have been treated barbarically by religious extremists since long, the way Jews were treated in Nazi Germany.

The whole world celebrated Human Rights Day on 10th December, and on this occasion the Pakistan Minister for human rights, Shireen Mazari, waxed eloquent in a hypocritical statement about how Pakistan is committed to upholding human rights, and she mentioned about how the Pakistan Govt was taking up the issue of human rights violation of Kashmiris and Muslims in Europe in international fora.
 
But her hypocrisy was revealed when not a word did she say about the horrendous genocidal treatment of Ahmadiyas in Pakistan.
 
Are Ahmadiyas not human beings? And if they are, are they not entitled to human rights? 

I myself have repeatedly condemned atrocities on Kashmiris by Indian security forces, as I believe no one should be persecuted, and I have condemned lynching of Muslims in India by cow vigilantes, but what about the atrocities on Ahmadiyas in Pakistan?

Ahmadiyas were declared non Muslims by a Constitutional Amendment in 1974 at the instance of Z. A. Bhutto, who posed as being a great champion of the poor and oppressed, which was just hypocrisy, and the tyrant Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq who issued Ordinance XX in 1984 making it a crime for Ahmadiyas to 'pose' as Muslims or call their place of worship a masjid or call the Ahmadiyas to prayers by azaan.
 
Ahmadiyas were forbidden to recite Quranic verses or exchange Islamic greetings publicly or gather on Eid.

Persecution of Ahmadiyas had started soon after creation of Pakistan. In the 1953 riots hundreds of Ahmadiyas were massacred, and so also in 1974.

But it picked up momentum under General Zia's rule.
 

Mass burial service after Lahore Massacre on 28th May 2010. 

 
There have been several massacres of Ahmadiyas, e.g. in the attack in Lahore on their place of worship in 2010 in which about a hundred were killed.
 
In fact murders of Ahmadiyas (often in a ghastly manner e.g. by stoning them to death) has been an almost annual feature in Pakistan for decades, with the police being bystanders or even collaborators.
 
They have been barbarically treated, their places of worship vandalised and burnt down , their children harassed, their students victimised, and they were humiliated in various ways e.g. by making them state in their passport application that Mirza Ghulam Ahmed, the founder of their sect, was an imposter and they were non-Muslims.

 Mirza Ghulam Ahmed
 
And what was their 'crime'? That they do not regard Prophet Muhammad as the last Prophet (which mainstream Muslims believe) while still calling themselves Muslims.

I am not going into the question whether Ahmadiyas regard Prophet Muhammad as the last Prophet or not (some regard Mirza Ghulam Ahmed as a Mahdi or redeemer, not a Prophet) but assuming they do not, and assert that Mirza Ghulam Ahmed was indeed another Prophet, are they cutting off anyone's head, are they chopping off anyone's limbs?
 
Everyone should be free to believe what he/she wants. That is what Jinnah, who is regarded as the founder of Pakistan, said in his speech of 11th August 1947.

And why should Ahmadiyas not have a right to call themselves Muslims or call their place of worship a masjid? If they do so, are they cutting off anyone's head, are they chopping off anyone's limbs? If other Muslims don't like Ahmadiyas they need not associate with them or go to the Ahmadiyas place of worship, but why should they persecute Ahmadiyas? To my mind such persecution is goodagardi and barbarism.

The present Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan, who poses to be liberal and modern, being educated in Oxford, shamelessly hobnobbed with religious bigots like the Tehreeke Labayat during his election campaign to get votes, and spoke against Ahmadiyas.
 
He gave a PTI ticket to that rascal Amir Liaquat who anchored a TV programme in which venom was spouted against Ahmadiyas, resulting in killings of many of them. And soon after he was sworn in as Prime Minister an Ahmadiya place of worship was burnt down.
 
 Atif Mian 
 
He also forced out of the Pakistan Economic Advisory Council Atif Mian, a world renowned economist of Princeton University only because he was an Ahmadiya (an act for which even his ex wife Jemima condemned him).

Zafarullah Khan 
 
Ahmadiyas have played an outstanding role in Pakistan. The only person till date to serve as the President of both UN General Assembly and the International Court of Justice, Muhammad Zafarullah Khan, was an Ahmadiya, and so was Nobel Laureate Dr. Abdus Salam. But Abdus Salam's grave was desecrated because it had Quranic verses written on it, as were many other graves of Ahmadiyas.

In my opinion the United Nations must now intervene, as it did in Bosnia, to prevent a forthcoming Holocaust of Ahmadiyas, as it happened to Jews in Nazi Germany

 
 

Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India


 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

Most shared Punjab Today articles:

 

KYUN KE HUM HAIN HINDUSTANI

Three Women of 1984

 FROM 1984 TO BARGARI - Hurt & angry, we’ve tried rage, anger. Did we miss karuna?   

REVISITING 1984 – RIOT AROUND A POLE     

KARTARPUR SAHIB: A CLARION CALL FOR PEACE IN AN AGE OF CYNICISM

If it could happen to Arun Shourie, imagine what could they do to you?

Healers & Predators – The Doctor is In, & is very corrupt

Amarinder, Badals, AAP — Every party in Punjab is now an Akali Dal

Welcome to 1947. Happy Independence Day. Would you like to step out?

In Pakistan, a donkey pays for democracy – bleeding, its nostrils ripped apart

WOOING THE PANTH: Amarinder a little less Congressy, Akali Dal a little more saffron

"Captain Amarinder Singh ji” and "Rahul”: Reading Sign Language In A Relationship

The Comrade In Punjab - Lost, Irrelevant, Asleep, Even Bored!

WATERS ROYALTY - The Loot that Rajasthan Committed

AMARINDER GOVT's LOVE FOR FARMERS, AND MY DAD's FOR HIS SCOOTER

OF SUNNY KID & HORSE SENSE: The Punjab-Punjab Ties  

TRUDEAU VISIT AND RIGHT-WING MEDIA MACHINE         

 OF NIRMAL SINGH'S EYES 

Mr. CHIEF MINISTER, PLEASE CALL OFF JANUARY 7 FUNCTION         

MR PRESIDENT, PLEASE TAKE BACK HIS GALLANTRY MEDAL       

A SAFFRON JOURNEY VIA CANADA

BAD, BAD WOMAN!

 


 

_______________________________________________________________

Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT





[home] 1-3 of 3


Comment by: Anwar Khan Ghauri

UN is impotent unless USA & vested interests if so then the said UN intervene other wise they are spectators

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PAKISTAN ARMY & JUDICIARY
The death sentence to General Pervez Musharraf
21.12.19 - Justice Markandey Katju
The death sentence to General Pervez Musharraf



PAKISTANI army officers and Pakistani Ministers seem enraged and are shouting themselves hoarse against the recent verdict of a 3 member Special Court in Pakistan sentencing former army chief General Pervez Musharraf to death for high treason.

To my mind there can be no manner of doubt that the verdict is correct.

Article 6 of the Pakistan Constitution states "Any person who abrogates or subverts or suspends or hold in abeyance the Constitution, or attempts to do so, by use of force or show of force or any other unconstitutional means, shall be guilty of high treason".

General Musharraf was clearly guilty of high treason, as in 1999 he suspended the Pakistan Constitution after staging a blatantly unconstitutional army coup.
 
He was again guilty of high treason in 2007 when he again suspended the Constitution, declared martial law, illegally suspended the Chief Justice of Pakistan, and dismissed judges of the Supreme Court and High Court who did not take oath of allegiance to the army.

The Pakistan army spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor (in pic) has said that the verdict "has been received with a lot of pain and anguish by the rank and file of the Pakistan armed forces. Someone who served for 40 years, and fought wars in the defense of the country can never be a traitor".

But this statement overlooks Article 6 of the Pakistan Constitution (quoted above). Should a judgment not be given just because it causes pain and anguish to someone?

Prime Minister Imran Khan had once been a strong critic of Musharraf, and had demanded that he be tried for treason. However, later on, due to his lust for power, he has changed his tune, and has cozied up to the military, and is widely perceived as its puppet.

Imran Khan's ministers are falling head over heels in condemning the verdict. His Sancho Panza, Science and Technology Minister Fawad Chaudhry has said that the judiciary has "pushed the army against a wall. It is an honour based institution. If you keep doing so, won’t they react?".

The response to this is
(1) The judiciary has not pushed anyone against a wall. It has only gone by what is clearly stated in Article 6 of the Pakistan Constitution
(2) The Pakistan army can hardly be called ‘ an honour based institution ‘.
 
In my article ‘The Truth about the Pakistan military’ published online and in Ayesha Siddiqa’s book ‘Military Inc’ details have been given how the Pakistan military has looted the country, having penetrated into almost every sector of the Pakistan economy through the Fauji Foundation, Army Welfare Trust, Shaheen Foundation, etc. The Pakistan military is a gang of big time thieves and dacoits. How can it be called ‘an honour based institution’?

Ever since General Ayub Khan (in pic) staged a military coup in 1958, the Pakistan army has behaved like a tiger which has tasted human blood. Following the dictum ‘Power grows out of the barrel of a gun’ it has terrorized all sections of Pakistan society who dare not question its misdeeds, fearing terrible consequences. It has ruled directly over Pakistan for 33 years, and indirectly for much of the rest.
 
Pakistani Army's senior officers are staunch supporters of the retired Generals, and oppose any action against their misdeeds, firstly because the latter were their superiors to whom they still have a sense of loyalty, and secondly because they themselves will one day retire and may face similar action unless a precedent is established that Generals are immune.

But are Generals above the law?
 
In the Nuremberg Trials Field Marshal Keitel and Gen Jodl, and in the Tokyo Trials, Generals Tojo and Yamashita, were sentenced to be hanged. The law is above everybody, howsoever high.

It is the first time in Pakistan’s history that a military leader has faced any kind of accountability for his misdeeds by a civilian authority (the judiciary). 

In my article ‘Salute to the Judges of the Pakistan Supreme Court’ I have praised the Pakistan Supreme Court for showing guts in checking Gen Bajwa’s extension, and have contrasted it to the Indian SC which has cowardly surrendered before the BJP Govt (considering its disgraceful Ayodhya verdict, its shameful treatment of Justice Kureshi, its cowardly refusal to uphold the rights of Kashmiris, etc). 

Three cheers again to the Pakistan judiciary for its death sentence on Musharraf. The Pakistan army must now learn how to behave, instead of regarding themselves above the law. The Generals should know that for acting unconstitutionally the gallows await them.

 
 

Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India


 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

Most shared Punjab Today articles:

 

KYUN KE HUM HAIN HINDUSTANI

Three Women of 1984

 FROM 1984 TO BARGARI - Hurt & angry, we’ve tried rage, anger. Did we miss karuna?   

REVISITING 1984 – RIOT AROUND A POLE     

KARTARPUR SAHIB: A CLARION CALL FOR PEACE IN AN AGE OF CYNICISM

If it could happen to Arun Shourie, imagine what could they do to you?

Healers & Predators – The Doctor is In, & is very corrupt

Amarinder, Badals, AAP — Every party in Punjab is now an Akali Dal

Welcome to 1947. Happy Independence Day. Would you like to step out?

In Pakistan, a donkey pays for democracy – bleeding, its nostrils ripped apart

WOOING THE PANTH: Amarinder a little less Congressy, Akali Dal a little more saffron

"Captain Amarinder Singh ji” and "Rahul”: Reading Sign Language In A Relationship

The Comrade In Punjab - Lost, Irrelevant, Asleep, Even Bored!

WATERS ROYALTY - The Loot that Rajasthan Committed

AMARINDER GOVT's LOVE FOR FARMERS, AND MY DAD's FOR HIS SCOOTER

OF SUNNY KID & HORSE SENSE: The Punjab-Punjab Ties  

TRUDEAU VISIT AND RIGHT-WING MEDIA MACHINE         

 OF NIRMAL SINGH'S EYES 

Mr. CHIEF MINISTER, PLEASE CALL OFF JANUARY 7 FUNCTION         

MR PRESIDENT, PLEASE TAKE BACK HIS GALLANTRY MEDAL       

A SAFFRON JOURNEY VIA CANADA

BAD, BAD WOMAN!

 


 

_______________________________________________________________

Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT





[home] 1-3 of 3


Comment

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You may use these HTML tags:<p> <u> <i> <b> <strong> <del> <code> <hr> <em> <ul> <li> <ol> <span> <div>

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