January 06, 2018

Senate polls impossible on time, says Ahsan

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Interior Ahsan Iqbal on Friday said that it seemed the Senate elections would not be held on time while Senate Deputy Chairman Ghafoor Haideri said that he was not seeing that the assemblies would complete their tenure. Minister for Interior expressed these views while giving briefing on Nacta report in the Senate Standing Committee on Interior meeting.

The Senate body unanimously passed a resolution strongly condemning US President Donald Trump’s anti-Pakistan statement. The meeting was held with its Chairman Senator Abdul Rehman Malik in the chair here at the Parliament House in which he moved a resolution against the US President Donald Trump anti-Pakistan statement which was unanimously passed.

Senator A Rehman Malik Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior took serious notice of the alleged statement of Pakistani High Commissioner in Canada wherein he has endorsed and appreciated the Donald Trump’s anti-Pakistan statement and directed the Ministry of Interior to investigate whether the statement is fake or real; and on whose directions he has passed such statement and how can a government employee issue statement in personal capacity.

He directed the Committee should be informed about it in the next meeting. The Senate Standing Committee on Interior recommended to the Interior Ministry to suspend the order of suspension of Arms license immediately. The decision was endorsed by the members of the committee and also Interior Minister.

Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal apprised the meeting on National Action Plan (NAP). Senator A Rehman Malik appreciated his services as Interior Minister and hoped that he will ensure the implementation of NAP in its true spirits.

Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal said that after the terrorist attack on Army Public School in Peshawar, all the political parties agreed on the NAP and the backbone of the terrorism was broken following the successful Operation Zarb-e-Azb and Radul Fasaad. “The Indian agencies were also involved in terrorism in Pakistan,” he told the Committee.

He told the Committee that it would take two years to close the borders. “Besides Madrasa Reforms, the database of criminals and terrorists has also been prepared,” he said adding that the steps were being taken to stop the financial help to the terrorists while the counter terrorism force was being launched in the provinces and first batch of counter terrorism force was ready in Islamabad.

The Interior Minister said the first and major challenge is return of Afghan refugees. “I wanted to give in-camera briefing to the committee on the current situation,” he said. National Coordinator Nacta Ihsan Ghani briefed the committee on National Action Plan (NAP) in details and said that NAP is being implemented with full commitment and vigor.

Senators expressed their concerns over the non-implementation of NAP in its true spirits. Chairman Senate Committee Senator A Rehman Malik told the Committee that Nacta is actually not an operating authority or force. He while appreciating the efforts of Ihsan Ghani he directed that the government should invite foreign diplomats and ambassadors of other countries particularly Western to brief them about the services and scarifies of Pakistan in war against terrorism.

Rehman Malik advised that extra funds should be given to Nacta for projection of their work on private television channels and also ordered Pemra to convince the private TV channels to dedicate few minutes daily to highlight the work and efforts of NACTA and to educate the public about the measures against terrorism and play a role in de-radicalization.

Meanwhile, Senate Deputy Chairman Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri Friday said he didn’t see Parliament completing its constitutional term in the present circumstances. Speaking to newsmen at the Parliament House, he said if there came a change in Balochistan, then he also didn’t see the holding of Senate elections, Geo reported.

"The Imran-Zardari-Qadri troika seeks to topple the government before March," the Senate deputy chairman said. He said Jamiat Ulema Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) was in the opposition in Balochistan and the opposition was supposed to give tough time to the government and topple it.

"The matter can move towards Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for preventing elections in the Senate," Haideri said. He said the JUI-F chief had rested the decision, whether or not to bring no-confidence move in the Balochistan Assembly, with the provincial chapter of his party. He said the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) and a faction of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) were making efforts to change the Balochistan government.


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