Lack of quorum blocks passage of Commission on Women Bill

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Peshawar—Lack of quorum Tuesday hindered the passage of KP Commission on Status of Women Bill, 2016 from the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly leaving the Speaker Asad Qaiser with no other option than adjourned the proceedings of the house.Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly resumed the proceedings and clause to clause amendments in the draft bill were under discussion when a JUI-F legislator, Malik Riaz stunned the house with taking the floor to divert the attention of the Speaker towards the lack of quorum and forcing him for the adjournment of the proceedings of the house for two minutes. After resuming the proceedings, the Speaker asked the assembly staff for count and found only 21 members in the house out of the total 124 members, which was followed by the announcement of the adjournment of the house proceedings till 3:00 P.M of Friday.
Earlier, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Prohibition of Tobacco and Protection of Non-Smokers Health Bill, 2016 moved by Senior Minister for Health, Shahram Khan Tarakai for consideration was referred to the Select Committee of the house for conducting detail deliberations on it before its passage from the house.
Meanwhile, the Speaker also took exception to consecutive absence of the ministers and delay in the return of the replies of the questions submitted by the elected public representatives. Though the agenda for the question-hour of the house for the day was comprised of questions regarding the departments of Energy & Power, Higher Education, Archives, Libraries and Elementary & Secondary Education, but only question regarding the Energy and Power Department was included in the agenda and other questions were deferred on the request of the concerned departments.
First the issue was raised by Mufti Said Janan of JUI-F, who complained of the inclusion of only question on the agenda of the house and exclusion of the questions of other members. Fakhar-e-Azam Wazir of PPP while expressing concern over the attitude of the departments termed it a joke with the house and asked the speaker for give ruling in this regard.
The Speaker asked Advisor to CM on Higher Education to clarify situation about his department to which he said that he was ready for replying the questions. But, due to some unknown reasons the department had called for putting them pending. He assured the house that all those universities, which are avoiding answer the questions will face actions.
Senior Minister Inayatullah Khan also agreed with the concerns of both Mufti Said Janan and Fakhar-e-Azam Wazir and said that the house is the custodian of the rights of 20 million population of the province. He said that he will bring the matter in the notice of the chief minister for issuing directives to the Chief Secretary in this regard. The Senior Minister also proposed to the Speaker for convening a meeting of all administrative secretaries to express collective concern with them. Otherwise, he said the matter will go to the standing committee on the privileges, whose recommendations will be sent to government for implementation.—APP