After a lapse of four years, the matter of the standing committees has been raised once again by provincial ministers in the Balochistan Assembly.
“In a parliamentary set up, these committees form the backbone of the legislature, it is here that the parliamentarians debate on issues, obtain technical details on proposed laws and give it a final shape before bringing it to the floor of the house for a vote,” Provincial Minister for Agriculture Asad Baloch said.
The absence of standing committees came under debate when Provincial Minister for Finance Mir Asim Kurd tabled the annual monitoring report of the National Finance Commission (NFC).
Speaker Aslam Bhootani, who was presiding over the session, informed members that the Law Department had taken up the matter with the chief minister and committees will be formed shortly.
As many as 19 members were in attendance during the scheduled session on Monday, the proceedings have been adjourned till April5, 2012.
Speaking on a point of order, JUI-ideology leader, Abdul Khaliq Bashar Dost condemned the recent spate of killings targeting religious scholars in Quetta.
Underlining the gravity of the situation, he said, “Religious, political and tribal leaders are being targeted to create sectarian unrest in the province”.
Protest against targeted killing
Meanwhile, women belonging to the Hazara community staged a protest outside the Balochistan Assembly against government and law enforcement agencies’ inaction towards incidents of targeted killings in Quetta.
The protest demonstration was organised by the Hazara Democratic Party (HDP) against the target killing incident on Spinney Road on March 29, 2012, which left five people dead, including a woman belonging to the community.
“We are compelled to come out of our houses due to all the injustices done to our people. Hazara tribe has been subjected to targeted killings and other acts of terrorism for the past decade,” said Nazneen Zaman, president HDP women wing.
“Peace would prevail if government and its functionaries perform their constitutional duties with responsibility,” she added.
The protesting women said that the Hazara tribe members cannot travel due to prevailing insecurity and increasing number of attacks against them.
They called upon Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry to take suo motu notice of the deteriorating law and order situation in the province, particularly targeted killings of Hazara people on sectarian basis.
“We have pinned all our hope on the chief justice of Pakistan that he will provide us with justice,” a protestor told The Express Tribune.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 3rd, 2012.
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