Khatam-e-Nabuwwat bill passed by Senate

Zahid Chaudhary

Islamabad

After passage from the lower house, the Senate Friday passed the Elections Amendment Bill, 2017, related to Khatam-e-Nabuwwat clauses for voters.
The bill will now be signed into law by the President.
Law Minister Zahid Hamid presented the Elections Amendment bill in the Senate.
Speaking on the floor, he said, “We are all Muslims and believe in the finality of the Prophet (PBUH)”.
Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid said Qadiyani, Ahmadi or Lahori group will continue to be recognised as non-Muslims.
He said anyone could challenge the status of any person enrolled as Muslim in the voter list before the revising authority where the defendant will be required to sign the declaration of finality of Prophethood.
Failing to sign the declaration shall declare the defendant as non-Muslim and his vote will be expunged from the list for Muslim voters and be included in the non-Muslim list, he added.
Speaking during the session, Senate Deputy Chairman Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, who belongs to Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-F, said the Ahmadis’ status is the same as it was in the 1973 Constitution.
The newly-passed bill restores the Khatam-e-Nabuwwat declaration for voters to its original form and makes sections related to Ahmadis more effective. The sections are 7B, 7C of the Conduct of General Elections Order 2002.
The Senate was also expected to take up Friday the Constitutional Amendment Bill, 2017 relating to the delimitation of constituencies. However, the house failed to ensure the number of lawmakers to vote on the bill. The house of 104 needed a two-thirds majority to pass the bill, whereas, less than 50 lawmakers were present in the house on Friday.
The bill pertains to the fresh delimitation of constituencies in line with the provisional results of the latest census in light of the general elections next year.
In the NA on Thursday, the constitutional amendment bill on delimitation was passed with 242 parliamentary members voting in its favour and one against in a house of 342 members. The government needed 228 votes to pass the bill.

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