Opposition-dominated Senate adopts resolution on Safdar saga

PPP backs PML-N’s viewpoint over ‘political and legal implications’ of waiting for findings by recently-formed bodies

By: News Desk      Published: 12:32 AM, 23 Oct, 2020
Opposition-dominated Senate adopts resolution on Safdar saga

The Senate has adopted a resolution on the arrest and release of PML-N leader Muhammad Safdar in Karachi where he accompanied his wife Maryam Nawaz for the second event of opposition’s campaign, Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM).  

Leader of Opposition in Senate Raja Zafarul Haq tabled the resolution in the opposition-dominated Upper House on Thursday, raising the demand for a joint panel to dig into it.

Backed by other PTI senators, Leader of House Shehzad Waseem opposed the resolution, saying that two investigation committees had already been constituted and the Upper House should wait for the findings.

Waseem said no one was talking about the incident at Quaid-i-Azam’s mausoleum that resulted in registering a case against the son in law of ex-premier Nawaz Sharif, he added.

However, Raja Zafarul Haq said there would be political and legal implications of waiting for findings a viewpoint backed by PPP leaders Sherry Rehman and Raza Rabbani.

Sherry Rehman also welcomed the COAS notice but said the Senate should also be allowed to play its role. "Let Senate play its role. This can lead to a grave crisis and it can turn into a constitutional crisis."

Raza Rabbani lauded the army chief's promise to hold a probe but pointed out that it would be a departmental inquiry. The former Senate chairperson said that the resolution could be taken up under Rule 263 and urged the incumbent chair Sadiq Sanjrani to head the committee.

Law Minister Farogh Naseem too second the stance of PPP and PML-N but he stressed a conversation on the statute about the sanctity of Quaid-i-Azam’s mausoleum should also be held.

Information Minister Shibli Faraz said the opposition was putting pressure on the government by making speeches to divert attention ‘from the crime Safdar committed’ at the Jinnah's mausoleum. However, the Senate referred the matter to the law committee concerned.

Safdar’s arrest on charges of violating the sanctity of Jinnah’s mausoleum drew PDM leader’s ire. The Sindh government formed a ministerial committee while the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa took notice and ordered the Karachi Corps Commander to probe the mater