Senate approves national status to four regional languages

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Considers bill on Ruet-e-Hilal, wants end of passengers’ problems at BKA

Zubair Qureshi

Islamabad

The Senate Standing Committee on Law & Justice, after detailed deliberation and after seeking input from all the stakeholders and the quarters’ concerned has approved the Constitutional (Amendment) Bill, 2016 to grant national status to the regional languages spoken in far and wide of country. The Bill was introduced by Senators Sassui Palijo and Mukhtiar Ahmad Dhamrah with certain amendments.
The amendment was proposed in clause (1) of Article 251 of the Constitution to declare Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashto and Balochi, as national languages along with Urdu. The committee appreciated Senators Sassui Palijo and Mukhtiar Ahmad Dhamrah for their contribution. The Committee also took into consideration the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2017 introduced by Senator Muhammad Azam Khan Swati seeking amendment in Article 255 of the Constitution.
Members of the Committee were of the view that there is dire need to take relevant stakeholders on-board and initiate a consultative process for seeking the view point of those who would be affected. Further discussion on the Bill was deferred for seeking opinion from the quarters concerned. The Committee also discussed the Public Petition submitted by Rukhsana Qamber pertaining to representation regarding taking over of the areas study centres for Africa, North and South America, Islamabad by Quaid-i-Azam University.
The Committee was informed about the legal status of the area centres by the Ministry concerned. Miss. Rukhsana Qamber gave her point of view on the matter. Members of the Committee also put forward their recommendations in this regard. The Committee was attended by Senator Saleem Zia, Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah, Nihal Hashmi, Nawabzada Saifullah Magsi, Saeed Ghani, Mrs. Zahida Khan, Farooq H. Naek, Muhammad Azam Khan Swati, Sassui Palijo, Mukhtiar Ahmad Dhamrah, Karim Ahmad Khawaja, Sardar Muhammad Azam Khan Musakhel, Taj Muhammad Afridi, Ahmad Hassan, Rehman A. Malik besides Leader of the Opposition in the Senate Atizaz Ahsan and high ranking official of the Ministry of Law, Pakistan Academy of Letters, experts and other stakeholders.
APP Adds: Senate Standing Committee on Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony on Wednesday held discussion on Pakistan Ruet e Hilal bill. The meeting was chaired by Senator Maulana Hafiz Hamdullah.
Pakistan Muslim League(N) Senator Raja Zafarul Haq informed the committee about scientific methods used by other Islamic countries to decide citing of the moon.
Senate Special Committee on Bacha Khan Airport (BKA) on Wednesday directed authorities concerned to devise a proper plan to reduce the hardships of passengers at Bacha Khan Airport Peshawar. The committee met here at Parliament House under the chairmanship of Senator Mohsin Aziz.
Members of the committee Senator Muhammad Javed Abbasi, Senator Nisar Muhammad, Senator Syed Shibli Faraz, Senator Atta ur Rehman, Senator Ahmed Hassan, Senator Khanzada Khan, Senator Brig. (R) John Kenneth Williams, Senator Haji Saif Ullah Khan Bangash, Senator Ilyas Ahmad Bilour, Senator Mrs. Rubina Khalid and Advisor to the Prime Minister on Aviation.
The committee said that there was a serious problem at Peshawar Airport and all should be resolved on priority basis to facilitate the passengers. The convener of the committee said that Bacha Khan Airport was not properly planned thus causing inconvince to the passengers.
Senator Atta ur Rehman said that flights should be restored to other airports of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa including Dera Ismail Khan. Earlier, the senior officials of Aviation Division briefed the committee about the progress on roads leading to Bacha Khan International Airport Peshawar.

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