KARACHI-Continuous absence of concerned ministers to answer queries of lawmakers in Sindh Assembly displeased Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani who gave ‘last warning’ to the absent ministers and their parliamentary secretaries to fulfill their responsibilities.
The speaker’s warning came on a call attention notice moved by Rabia Khatoon of Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan who asked the local government ministry as to what steps were being taken for cleanliness in Korangi Town. The same call attention notice had to be deferred for three times due to absence of Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah and Parliamentary Secretary Saleem Baloch. “This call attention notice is being tabled for the last three sittings but neither the minister nor parliamentary secretary turned up to answer,” the Speaker remarked while terming the local government’s ministry attitude ‘inappropriate’.
Speaker Durrani was of the view that it was responsibility of the minister and parliamentary secretary to be present and answer lawmakers’ queries. Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah; however reached the Assembly but till then two call attention notices pertaining to his department had already been deferred. “I was attending an event in which Iranian Foreign Minister was the guest and rushed to the Assembly soon after receiving your message,” he told to Durrani.
No queries in question-hour, meanwhile, not a single question out of eight pertaining to the Energy department was taken up during the question-hour due to the absence of the members who had submitted their written questions. The written questions were submitted by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s Adeeba Hassan and Dr Seema Zia, Nusrat Sehar Abbasi of Grand Democratic Alliance and newly appointed leader of opposition belonging to MQM-P Rana Ansar. aThe PTI lawmakers—except some dissidents— had not been attending the session and screened themselves since 9th May’s violence aftermath of Imran Khan’s arrest while GDA’s Nusrat Sehar Abbasi was also not coming to the Assembly since long. The leader of opposition was also not present during the Question Hour.
Meanwhile, the assembly unanimously passed “The Sindh Mass Transit Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2023.” According to the amended bill, a person who without permission enters into a corridor, station, or a depot or in any interferes, obstructs or damages any corridor, station, depot, mass transit vehicle or insularly facilities or travels or attempts to travel on a mass transit vehicle without payment of far shall be deemed to have committed an offence under this Act and shall be liable to punishment of such fines as may be prescribed by rules. The Sindh Assembly unanimously passed The Provincial Motor Vehicles (amendment) Bill, enabling provincial government to fix maximum and minimum fare of Bus Rapid
Transport (BRT) vehicles
The amended bill also exempted children under three feet or not exceeding five years would be exempted from the fare to travel in BRT vehicle. It also added different fines for as many as 27 other violations on people using BRT service and its infrastructure. As per new law, a fine of Rs500 was fixed for not possessing valid fare ticket or non-payment of fare, while Rs1,000 for entering or leaving a BRT vehicle other than a door marked as entry or exit or emergency for the passengers. The Assembly also passed The Sindh Immunization and Epidemics Control Bill, 2023 before the house was adjourned to Monday.