Asad-Qaiser

Bill deferred in NA to retain seats of ex-FATA in Senate

ISLAMABAD (APP): The Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaisar on Tuesday deferred a private member’s bill demanding to retain seats of erstwhile FATA in Senate.

A bill – the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (Article 59) – was moved by an Independent lawmaker Mohsin Dawar in National Assembly but was deferred by the Chair.

It is worth mentioning that there were eight seats of ex-FATA in Senate.

The total number of seats in the Senate will reduce to 96 from the existing 104 as eight FATA senators will retire after the tribal districts merger with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

The number of members of the Senate will be reduced to one hundred in March, 2021 after expiry of the term of four FATA senators and to 96 after expiry of term of remaining four members from FATA in March, 2024.

The Chair deferred two other bills suggesting their movers to have more consideration on them along with relevant ministers.

These bills included National Commission on Rights of the Child (Amendment) Bill, 2020 and the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2020.

Also, a bill related to extend the time for scrutiny of election candidates, introduced in the National Assembly on Tuesday, seeking six months time period for scrutiny of candidate’s credentials.

Rai Muhammad Murtaza Iqbal, a ruling party legislator moved the Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2020 aims to provide the extension in time period for scrutiny process of those who wants to fulfill all requirements of different departments by proving their eligibility.

The six months’ time period is proposed in favor of such candidates who wish their nomination papers to be rejected or accepted well in time.

In addition, the proposed amendment would also stop the candidates from bashing each other and to file baseless objections after publication of valid list of nominated candidates by the Returning Officer under sections 64 and 114 of the Elections Act.

Negative campaigns de-stroys the image of a candidate who wants to go thr-ough each phase of scrutiny being a fair candidate.

The mover has proposed amendment in section 60 of the Election Act, 2017 and proposed that in section 60, in sub-section (3), the full stop at the end a colon shall be substituted and thereafter the following proviso shall e added,- “ Provided that any candidate may submit his/her nomination paper not more than six months before or less than that, before the date of Elections for the purpose of fulfillment the requirements under section 62 and 63.”

It has been further proposed that in section 62, in sub-section (1), the full stop at the end a colon shall be substituted and thereafter the following proviso shall be added.” Provided that in case of a candidate, who, under section 60 had applied for the nomination six months before the elections such objection can be filed within a period of six months and before the publication of the list of validly nominated candidates by the Returning Officer under sections 64 and 114 of the said Act,.”

It further proposed that amendment in section 112, after the sub-section (8), full stop at the end a colon shall be substituted and thereafter the following proviso shall be added,- “ Provided that in case of that candidate, who, under section 60 had applied for nomination six months before the elections the requirements of this section shall be fulfilled within a period of six months and before the publication of the list of validly nominated candidates by the Returning Officer under sections 64 and 114 of the said Act,.”

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