MABAD - The National Assembly witnessed a little verbal clash among the members of parliament from Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and Muttahida Qaumi Movement over the issue of allegations levelled against Altaf Hussain.
Besides, the controversial memo issue was slightly discussed by only one member of the house. The house also adopted a bill to amend the Pakistan Penal Code, 1860, and code of criminal procedure, 1898, (the criminal law, amendment) bill, 2011 regarding punishment for a person who molests an underage and commits unnatural or carnal intercourse. It was moved by PPP MNA Justice (Retd) Fakhar-un-Nisa.
PML-N legislator Qudsia Arshad was the only MNA, who on point of order demanded of the judicial commission to investigate the matter of memo. It is an important matter and the commission should conduct probe into it so as to unmask the faces behind the controversy, she added.
Raising the issue about Zulfiqar Mirza, MNA from MQM Sajid Ahmed said Pir Mazharul Haq had claimed that the allegations against Altaf Hussain were baseless. Pir Mazharul Haq should be called in the house for details, he added. On this, PML-N legislator Shireen Arshad said Zulfiqar Mirza was a respectable person, as he informed the nation about the extortionist and corrupt mafia on oath. She said all of his documents should also be shared with the nation.
Another MNA from PML-N Rohail Asghar was of the view that four incidents of swearing on Quran by the government ministers happened, due to which the country was facing acts of terrorism, killings and other issues. He said it should not be practiced in politics.
Advisor to Prime Minister on Human Rights Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar, responding to the point raised by the MNAs on human rights issue, informed that Punjab was at the top of the list in crime rate, as 6242 murders, 192 kidnappings and over 2000 rape cases were witnessed in 2010. He said the provinces should take steps to control crimes. Earlier, MNAs Muhammad Pervaiz, Nisar Tanveer, Tasneem Siddiqui, Shireen Arshad Khan and Nighat Parvin expressed their concerns on human rights issues.
Speaking on point of order, PML-N legislator Abdul Qadir Baloch demanded investigation into the reason for terrorist attacks on armed forces, which claimed several precious lives. He said the parliamentary committee on Karachi and Balochistan brought no fruitful results and it should be probed. On it, PPP chief whip Khursheed Shah said dates were fixed for visiting Balochistan, however the visit was delayed as most of the committee members went to perform Haj. Speaking on point of order, PPP-S Chief Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao drew the attention of the house towards Lowari Tunnel project, saying that work had been stopped on it.
Responding to the issue of Lowari Tunnel, Minister for Communication Dr Arbab Alamgir said work on Lowari Tunnel project would be started soon after payment of Rs two billion. He said the Korean company had stopped work on the project due to shortage of funds, but now after receiving Rs two billion the work would be resumed.
On the issue of urea fertilizer, which would be debated in the house today (Wednesday), Parliamentary Secretary for Industries Pir Haider Ali Shah, while responding to queries on a call attention notice by different MPs, said that local production of urea fertilizer in the country was four lakh ton, which was more than the requirement.
In response to a question by notice of Yasmeen Rehman and other legislators, he said the government was purchasing urea from international market at Rs 3000 per bag and was providing Rs 1300 to Rs 1500 subsidy on each urea sack. He said in order to control the shortage, two lakh metric ton urea had reached Karachi and five lakh metric ton would arrive till December. He said it was also a responsibility of the provinces to take initiatives against smuggling. While, MNA Raza Hiraj said a resolution was moved to debate on urea fertilizer issue on Wednesday. It was against the rule 259 to take business on this matter.
The National Assembly also offered Fateha for martyred personnel of security forces in Balochistan. Minister Riaz Hussain Pirzada requested the house to offer Fateha for the security forces personnel, who embraced martyrdom in the line of duty and former minister Hamid Saeed Kazmi led the Fateha. Earlier, a bill moved by MNA Justice (Retd) Fakhar-un-Nisa Khoker regarding amendment to the Pakistan Penal Code 1860 and the code of criminal procedure 1898 (the criminal law, amendment) bill 2011 was laid in the house. The statement of objects and reason says that Child-molestation is increasing in different places in the country and even at public places, like bus stands, railway stations, roadside hotels or other hotels, children are molested and the molestation has become a business that is run at the cost of future of innocent, poor and needy children. It requires harsh measures to control it and punish the person involved in such heinous business.
Meanwhile, MNA Nauman Sheikh on the behalf of ANP President Asfandyar Wali presented this report on the bill to provide of preservation, protection and assertion of sovereignty of Pakistan (the sovereignty of Pakistan bill 2010) moved by Mian Riaz Hussain Pirzada and to the committee on 12th January 2010.
The 18-member committee comprising Asfandyar Wali, Palwasha Khan, Farahnaz Isphahani, Fuazia Habib, Nauman Islam Sheikh, Syed Ghulam Mustafa Shah, Mir Amir Ali Kahn Magsi, Aftab ahmed, Ayza Amir, Raja Muhammad Asad, Humair Hayat Khan Rokhri, Muhammad Hamza Shabaz Sharif, Fasisal Saleh Hayat, Ghias Ahmed Mela, Rana Asif Tauseef, Maulana Fazal-ur-Rahman, and other members. The committee in its meeting held on January 21, 2011 considered the bill in details. The majority of the members did not approve the said bill and recommended that the same may not be processed with by the National Assembly for legislation.
According to the statement of objects and reasons of the considered bill, there are many forces both inside and outside Pakistan who are weakening the defence of Pakistan and endangering the sovereignty and integrity of Pakistan. A vulnerable economic situation is being used to force Pakistan to take the steps, which are not in the national interest. It is, therefore, necessary to enact this law.
Definitions: In the act, unless there is anything repugnant to the subject or contact (a) Armed forces means the army, navy and air force of Pakistan.(b) Foreign country means a country other than Pakistan; (c) Parliament means the National Assembly and the Senate; and (d) President means the president of Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
According to the certificate to be issued by the president:(i) The sovereignty and dignity of Pakistan have not been compromised in any manner (ii) No compromise has been made on security or effectiveness of the nuclear program of Pakistan (iii) No understanding has been reached with any foreign country for interference in the change of command or promotions in the Pakistan Armed forces or in the structure or rule of the security forces of Pakistan (iv) No conditionality has been accepted from any source to weaken the defence of Pakistan against foreign aggression.