A parliamentary panel on Tuesday rejected an amendment proposed by a member of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) in the National Assembly seeking disqualification of parliamentarians with dual nationalities.
The National Assembly Standing Committee on Law and Justice rejected the private member bill of Tasneem Siddiqui that proposed a bar on dual nationality-holders from holding public office.
Chaired by Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Abdul Ghafoor Chaudhry, the NA panel rejected the bill saying it would overlap an already existing legislation on the subject.
“A new legislation in this regard would be tantamount to overlapping the existing laws… So it would be better to dispose it off”, a majority of the members asserted.
Election expenses bill
In addition to Siddiqui, PPP’s Nasir Ali Shah had also introduced a bill seeking similar amendments. Shah had proposed a limit to the expenses a candidate would be allowed for contesting parliamentary elections in his bill.
In his bill, Shah proposed that election candidates should be bound to inform the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) regarding the actual expenses made on contesting a seat of parliament.
The bill proposed a spending limit of Rs100,000 for each candidate of the National Assembly and Rs50,000 for provincial assembly candidates. It also sought complete ban on banners, hoardings and other publicity campaigns, which costs millions of rupees.
Shah had said that the aim of his bill was to provide fair ground to candidates from the middle class who cannot afford to spend large sums of money on election campaigns.
Meanwhile, the committee rejected Political Parties Amendment Bill moved by PPP’s Palwasha Khan. The bill suggested reserved seats in parliament for people from the middle class who have a monthly income of Rs25,000 and assets worth Rs1 million.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 29th, 2012.