Parliament to take up ‘public interest bills’

Published: May 2, 2019
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National Assembly of Pakistan. PHOTO: APP

National Assembly of Pakistan. PHOTO: APP

ISLAMABAD: As the federal govt decides to speed up the process of lawmaking, Minister for Law and Justice Barrister Dr Farogh Naseem will present bills related to legal reforms in parliament on Thursday (today).

Barrister Farogh Naseem has said that all bills are in the interest of the public. He voiced hope that the opposition keeping in view the people’s interest will support the lawmaking.

The law minister will present seven bills in the parliament today including amendment in Muslim family law ordinance, inheritance certificate, women’s rights in inheritance, whistleblower protection, amendments in civil laws and formation of legal and justice authority.

For the succession certificate, the ministry of law and justice will form a facilitation center under the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) for which it will seek assistance from the CNIC issuing authority.

According to the bill, Nadra facilitation center will issue a succession certificate in 15 days. Earlier, the applicants had to undergo court proceedings for years.

According to sources in the ministry of law and justice, Nadra will issue the succession certificate after collecting a biometric record of the entire family. Even those settled abroad will not have to visit Pakistan and will be able to undergo biometric verification through Pakistani consulate for the succession certificate.

After the implementation of the bill, 20 percent burden on courts will be reduced. The courts, earlier, used to issue succession certificate according to Nadra’s Family Registration Certificate (FRC). Owing to any dispute or a member of the family is under the age of 18, the court will have to be approached for the purpose.

The government has decided to introduce a two-tier system to conclude the civil cases at the earliest for which Legal and Justice Authority comprising lawyers offering free services will be formed for the needy citizens.

After the implementation of the two-tier system, the civil cases will not face delays due to stay order. Apart from this, the legal notices will be sent through the electronic procedure. The ministry of law will form a Legal Aid and Justice Authority for assisting the poor citizens with free lawyers in criminal cases.

According to sources, central authority for criminal law will be formed under the Ministry of Human Rights. According to the bill, the Legal and Justice Authority will facilitate the poor men, women, children, and transgender for fines and bail in criminal cases.

The federal government has taken a major step for the inheritance rights of women. The federal ombudsman for protection against harassment will follow the case from helping the women in getting their share in inheritance till the possession of properties.

The women will not have to visit the courts for getting their share in the inheritance. Instead, they will be able to file a complaint with the federal ombudsman for protection against harassment.

Sources said that the implementation of the law will first be made in the federation and then in the provinces. Anyone will be able to file a case with the federal ombudsman in place of a woman who is not provided share in the inheritance.

On receiving the complaint, the woman federal ombudsman will initiate inquiry and in case of possession not being granted, she will issue orders to the district administration.

In case of any legal complications, the matter will be sent to the civil court in 60 days.

Sources in the ministry of the law said that this law has been frame to the extent of Islamabad. The provinces will also be directed to draft a similar law.

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