QUETTA - The Balochistan Assembly on Saturday passed a condemnation resolution against the profane film produced in the US, and called for serious steps by the government to prevent the occurrence of such provocative actions in the future.
The House, which was set to motion by Deputy Speaker Syed Matiullah Aghan, also echoed with concerns over the slow pace of relief activities in torrential rains and flood-stricken Jaffarabad and Naseerabad districts.
During the proceedings, Jaffar Khan Mandokhel, Ainullah Shams, Engineer Zamark Khan, Habib-ur-Rehman Muhammad Hassani, Ruqia Saeed Hashmi, Ghulam Jan Baloch, Shahida Rauf and Dr. Fouzia Marri and other legislators strongly condemned the sacrilegious film that incited widespread condemnation in Muslim countries.
“This blasphemous act is against the charter of human rights,” they observed while asserting that the United Nations had declared respect for every religion as the basic right.
Health Minster Ainullah Shams of the JUI-F said that some Christians and Jews distorted the facts and portrayed negative image of the Prophet (PBUH). “Those people who term the Muslims as terrorists should not forget the World War I and World War II,” remarked the JUI-F leader.
On her turn, Ruqia Hashimi termed the publishing of the blasphemous caricatures and production of the profane film as the beginning of a crusade, saying the US president himself had expressed this after the 9/11 incident.
Speaking in the favour of his motion, Jaffar Mandokhel requested the House to convert his adjournment motion into a resolution. He said that when the US and Europe needed the Muslims against Russia, they never published blasphemous caricatures or produced any movie. “After the USSR was no more a superpower, they declared the Muslims as their enemy and started committing such provocative actions.”
Presenting the text of the resolution in the House, the lawmaker said the House strongly condemned the profane movie and blasphemous cartoons. He also demanded the federal government to taken serious steps at the international level by devising a comprehensive strategy to stop the occurrence of such blasphemous acts in the future. Later, the resolution was approved unanimously.
Speaking on a point of order, Minister for Zakat Saleem Khosa said that “the devastating flood prompted by heavy rainfall had played havoc in Naseerabad, Jaffarabad and Jhal Magsi districts, killing thousands of people”. He said that the actual number of deaths from the rains and ensuing flood was higher than that reported in flood-hit areas of Balochistan. He also expressed annoyance over the slow pace of relief activities.
According to Khosa, even 10 per cent people affected by rains were not getting proper food. “Floods have destroyed Jaffarabad, as Dera Allahyar is still under four feet deep floodwater” he said, adding that that the plains in Naseerabad were also inundated.
He said that if the Irrigation Department had paid serious attention to strengthen embankments of canals flowing in eastern Balochistan after the 2010 floods, the losses from this year’s heavy rainfall might have curtailed.
The minister also blamed the Sindh government for diverting floodwater from Jacobabad district of Sindh to Jaffarabad district of Balochistan by protecting the Jacobabad airfield. “At least, Balochistan should have been informed that floodwater has been diverted to its side,” he added, and opined that due to the wrong designing of Jaffarabad bypass, the level of devastation had surged in the region.
Tabled by Maulvi Sarwar Musakhel, Sardar Masood Loni and Sheikh Jaffar Mandokhel, the House also adopted another resolution, calling for declaring nine districts of Balochistan exempt from road tax, income tax and motor vehicle tax.
They opined that under Article 246 of the Constitution of the country, the districts of Balochistan, including Zhob, Qila Abdullah, Qila Saifullah, Shirani, Musakhel, Loralai, Barkhan, Kohlu, Dera Bugti and Dalbandin, had been given the status of tribal areas. They were of the view that according to the relevant laws, these areas were exempted from paying road tax, property tax and motor vehicle tax. The resolution was unanimously approved by the House.
Later, after the completion of other proceedings, the chair adjourned the house till September 24.