Senate Passes Elections Bill 2017, Opposition’s amendments rejected

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ISLAMABAD, Sep 22 (APP): The Senate on Friday passed the Elections Bill
2017 and rejected an amendment of the Opposition to put restrictions on an individual who was not qualified to become member of the Parliament, and was also not eligible to lead any political party.
Leader of the Opposition Ch. Aitzaz Ahsan had suggested an amendment in
clause 203 of the bill, which said any individual who was not qualified to become a member of the parliament, should not be eligible to become a party’s chairperson either.
Voting on the proposed amendment was made and it was rejected by the
House by one vote i.e. 37 to 38.
According to the bill, every citizen would have the right to be part of
a political party, except those in government service, and would also have the right to create a political party.
The House also voted on another crucial amendment (clause 60, sub clause
2, paragraph d) regarding the wealth statement. It was moved by a PTI lawmaker but the House also rejected it.
The House addressed the entire business and took up two Calling
Attention Notices regarding non-payment of flying allowance to PIA Cabin Crew since August, 2016, and the incident of lynching of a 17-year old Christian student in a school of district Vehari.
The first Calling Attention Notice was responded to by Minister for
Parliamentary Affairs Sheikh Aftab Ahmed who informed the House that payment of allowance had been made to PIA Cabin till June 30, 2017, while the remaining amount would be paid soon.
Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid and Minister for Statistics
Kamran Micheal responded to the other Calling Attention Notices and informed the House about efforts being made to arrest the perpetrators of this act.
The Chair admitted an Adjournment Motion for discussion on the
significance of the BRICS declaration with particular reference to China’s view point on Pakistan.
Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani deferred all the questions related to the
Ministry of Interior due to the absence of the relevant minister and the proceedings also remained suspended for 15 minutes owing ministerial absence.
Syed Muzffar Hussain Shah, a member of the Committee on Rules of
Procedure and Privileges, on behalf of Chairman of the Committee, presented the reports of the committee on the Protection of Economic Reforms (Amendment) Bill, 2016, the Amendments in Rules 64 and 93 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate, 2012, and the Question of Breach of Privilege of the House by the Additional Secretary (America) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Moved by the Leader of the House Raja Zafar ul Haq, the House adopted a
motion to constitute a special committee regarding implementation of building codes and civic regulations in Islamabad.
Later, the session was prorogued sine die and a Member of Panel of
Presiding Officer Syed Muzffar Hussain Shah read the prorogation order.