ISLAMABAD, July 18, 2016: The Senate adopted four resolutions and witnessed introduction of two private members’ bills during the first sitting of its 250th session on Monday, reports Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet.
Following are some key observations of the House business:
- The Senate met for three hours and 32 minutes.
- The sitting started at the scheduled time of 1600 hours.
- The Chairman chaired the entire sitting while Deputy Chairman was not present.
- The Leader of the House attended the sitting for three hours and 24 minutes while the Leader of the Opposition was present for an hour and 30 minutes.
- Parliamentary leaders of PkMAP, ANP, PTI, PPPP, JUI-F, BNP-A, MQM, NP, PML and PML-N attended the sitting.
- Nineteen members (18% of the total membership – 104) were present at the outset and 16 members (15%) at the end of the sitting.
- Two minority Senators attended the sitting.
- Tabled by the Leader of the House, the Senate unanimously adopted a resolution to pay tributes to the legendary Pakistani philanthropist Abdul Sattar Edhi. Twenty-six lawmakers and Chairman Senate spoke on it for 72 minutes.
- The House unanimously adopted a resolution to condemn Indian aggression in Kashmir and brutal killings of Kashmiri Muslims. The resolution was moved by PML Senator.
- Tabled by PPPP Senator, the House adopted a resolution to offer condolence over death of Qawal Amjad Sabri.
- Sponsored by MQM lawmaker, the House adopted another resolution for effective steps by the government to promote religious harmony, unity and brotherhood in the country.
- Two resolutions were deferred on the request of the movers which were about construction of 250 KM highway along the coast from Sircreek to Karachi and necessary legislation to regulate the Mental Health Act on priority basis in three provinces.
- Two other resolutions to establish model jail/ rehabilitation center of international standard for prisoners in Islamabad and control the increasing number of child beggars in Islamabad were dropped due to absence of movers.
- The National Accountability (Amendment) Bill, 2015 was rejected by the House with majority vote.
- The House witnessed introduction of two bills including the Protection against Harassment of Women at Workplace (Amendment) Bill, 2016 and the Prohibition of Smoking and Protection of Non-smokers Health (Amendment) Bill, 2016. Both bills were referred to the relevant committees for further deliberations.
- Another two bills including the Protection of Economic Reforms (Amendment) Bill, 2016 and the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2016 were deferred on requests of the movers.
- A bill – the Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Medical University Islamabad
- (Amendment) Bill, 2016 – was deferred till next private member’s day as Secretariat Staff was asked to review the content of identical bill introduced in the National Assembly.
- Two bills including the Representation of the People (Amendment) Bill, 2016 and the Senate (Election) (Amendment) Bill, 2016 were withdrawn by the mover. Minister for Law and Justice informed the House that similar amendments mentioned in these bills are under consideration of Electoral Reforms Committee.
- On behalf of the Chairman Standing Committee on Finance, an Independent lawmaker presented reports on three legislative proposals and about Salaries and Allowances of the Election Commission of Pakistan.
- Chairman Standing Committee on Water and Power presented report about a starred question regarding replacement of old transmission lines in Talash Feeder (PESCO).
- Chairman Standing Committee on SAFRON presented report on a starred question regarding recent transfer of Political Agents in various Agencies of FATA which was later adopted by the House.
Representation and Responsiveness
- The House discussed three motions under Rule 218 which were about steps for poverty alleviation, matters related to Universal Service Funds and issues being faced by the business Community regarding their refund claims in FBR.
- A motion about arrangements made by the Government of Pakistan for Hajj 2015 was dropped due to absence of mover while another motion about performance of Benazir Income Support Programme was withdrawn by the mover.
- Two separate motions for proposed amendments in rules 56, 143, 196, 198 and 209 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate, 2012 were referred to the relevant committee.
- A PTI lawmaker’s privilege motion against Director CDA was referred to the relevant committee.
Order and Institutionalization
- Two Points of Public Importance consumed eight minutes of the proceeding.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and public.
- The attendance of lawmakers is available on the website.
This daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the Senate proceeding conducted by Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN). Errors and omissions are excepted
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