Senate session marred by verbal clash between PML-N, MQM-P lawmakers
House grants extension to Law and Justice Committee for presentation of reports
The exchange of hot words soon turned ugly with both the leaders hurling abuses against each other, which the chair expunged from the proceedings.
The clash erupted when Ateeq Sheikh tried to intervene Mushahidullah’s speech. The fuming PML-N leader challenged the MQM-P senator on hurling abuses even telling him “Go, and file an FIR against me”.
He said MQM-P lawmakers still think that they are in power.
Meanwhile, the Upper House granted 30-day extension to Standing Committee on Law and Justice for presentation of reports on three legislative proposals.
The House passed three motions under Rule 194 (1) granting 30-day extension to Standing Committee on Law and Justice for presentation of reports on three legislative proposals including the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (Amendment of Article 140); the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (Amendment of Article 73) and the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (Amendment of Article 100).
On behalf of Chairman Standing Committee on Cabinet Secretariat, a member of the Committee Asad Ashraf presented reports of the Committee on the Pakistan Commissions of Inquiry (Amendment) Bill, 2020 and on a Point of Public Importance regarding representation of provinces in regulatory authorities.
Chairperson Standing Committee on Parliamentary Affairs presented report of the Committee on a Point of Public Importance regarding bleak future of the employees of ERRA.
The House considered and adopted report of the Standing Committee on States and Frontier Regions on its visit to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa from March 11 to March 12, 2020.
Nine Seerat Chairs
Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood apprised the Senate that nine Seerat Chairs would be established by the Government through the Higher Education Commission (HEC) in different universities of the country.
Responding to a question during Question Hour, the minister said that Seerat Chairs would be set up under the Project tilted “Establishment of Seerat Chairs in Public Sector Universities” which was approved by Central Development Working Party (CDWP) in its meeting held on October 3rd, 2014.
However, only three Seerat Chairs had been established so far and they were Gender Studies in University of Punjab, Lahore, Human Rights & Justice in University of Education, Lahore and Global Peace in International Islamic University, Islamabad.
The recruitment process had been designed to place competent, vastly experienced and internationally acclaimed Islamic scholars on Seerat Chairs.
He said in this regard, three recruitment processes had been completed based on open advertisement, and competitive process.
In first recruitment cycle, only one scholar vis. Dr. Qibla Ayaz was appointed on the Seerat Chair for Inter-faith and Communal Harmony, which later became vacant due to his appointment as the Chairman of the Council of Islamic Ideology.
He said during the 2nd attempt, above listed 03 chairs had been selected. While in third cycle, scholars on the two Chairs were selected, however, the matter was pending on account of stay granted by the court. The remaining four Chairs would be advertised and established by HEC during 2020, he said.
No big hospital sets up in capital
State Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan on Friday informed the Senate that no big hospital has been established in the federal capital for last 25-30 years after Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS).
Responding to various supplementary questions during Question Hour, the minister said there was dire need of setting up another big hospital in public sector.
Many patients from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab also regularly visited public sector hospitals in the Federal Capital, he added.
He said Establishment of Islamabad General Hospital at Tarlai was approved by CDWP at total cost of Rs2499.993 million. Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) approved grant assistance of Rs75,000,000 (Equivalent to Rs2,000 million) for this project, he added.
He said in Financial Year 2016-17, Rs100.000 million including Rs.50.000 million FEC was allocated to this project.
The minister said that such hospital was expected to be completed by June, 2019 where the construction work was started from the boundary wall by PWD in October 2016, but due to litigation by some local land mafia it was delayed for 2 years being subjudiced in the court.
Presently the boundary wall was complete, the approach roads from the Lehtrar road and Park Road are also complete while gates are installed, all work was done through GOP funds of the project amount, he said.
To another question, Ali Muhammad Khan said out of total 302,424 Coronavirus patients, as many as 290,261 Coronavirus patients have been recovered so far.
He said effective steps were taken to control the pandemic which was also acknowledged worldwide.
Paying tributes to doctors and paramedic staff, the minister said that they did wonderful job during the pandemic despite limited resources.
He said international institutions were doing research to control the pandemic while our own scientists and institutions were also carrying out research to prepare vaccine in this regard.
The minister said assistance was provided to 10.6 million families under Ehsas Programme during COVID-19 adding that more share was given to Sindh province than its specified ratio during the pandemic.
To a separate question, the minister said Drug Control Section of the Health Department, Islamabad has seized 24 different expired drugs from 05 different premises/firms during last one year.