ISLAMABAD - Parliamentary Commission for creation of new provinces in the Punjab on Monday has completed the consultation process and would now initiate preparation of the report in the light of the gathered information in next few days.
The Commission's meeting held here at the Parliament House under the Chairmanship of Senator Farhatullah Babar wherein leading people from the area including Nawab of Bahawalpur Salahuddin Abbassi, Seraiki Qaumi Ittehad leader Abdul Jabbar Abbassi, Seraiki Wasaib Movement leader Sheikh Badr Munir and Mahmood Nazami from Taunsa presented their views and suggestions on creation of Seraiki province and restoration of Bahawalpur province.
Talking to media after the Commission's meeting, Senator Farhatullah Babar said that the Commission has consulted around 18 experts on the issue while the Commission has also received over 1,800 recommendations and suggestions on creation of Seraiki province and restoration of Bahawalpur province.
To a question, he said that the Commission would complete the examination of the reflection of the stakeholders as well as the suggestions they had received from the people of the area by end of current week and would complete recommendations for the Parliament as soon as possible.
To another question, he admitted that in case the Punjab Assembly would fail to pass the recommendations of creating of Seraiki province with two-thirds majority the new province or provinces could not be carved out.
Sources aware of the deliberations of the Commission informed TheNation that majority of the experts who had come up with various proposals and maps of Seraiki province had proposed inclusion of parts of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan in it, whereas the Commission's mandate is limited to the province of Punjab only.
Sources aware of the deliberations of the Commission's meeting informed TheNation that Nawab of Bahawalpur Salauddin Abbassi came up with strong demand for restoration of the Bahawalpur province and also included in it major parts of the Southern Punjab which were historically part of the state of Bahawalpur.
However, some other experts who presented their recommendations before the Commission proposed creation of Southern Punjab province amalgamating Bahawalpur in it as well.
However, Seraiki Qaumi Ittehad leader Abdul Jabbar Abbassi presented proposals for restoration of Bahawalpur province and creation of Southern Punjab province as well, sources in the Commission informed and ,added, that he has also proposed inclusion of DI Khan and Bannu from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and parts of Balochistan where Seraiki speaking people were living since centuries as part of the new provinces and presented proofs from history to establish that these areas were governed by Multan.
Political and Constitutional experts said that the recommendations to be prepared by the Commission would likely confine it to the proposal and suggestion of creating one or two provinces in Punjab and would not include the areas of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan, proposed by some of the experts and those striving for creation of Seraiki province for decades, hence the proposed recommendations would not get approval of these people.
Similarly, in case the Commission would come up with the proposal for creation of only one province instead of two provinces as demanded by the people of the area, the matter would again land in controversy and definitely the chances of its getting the affirmative nod of Punjab Assembly with two-thirds majority becomes bleak for creating the province.