Friday February 23, 2024

Golden Jubilee of Constitution: NA Speaker calls for unity, lowering political temperature

March 31, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Speaker of the National Assembly Raja Pervez Ashraf called for lowering the political temperature in the country, advising to let bygones be bygones and unite under the Constitution to ensure all institutions stay within a legal framework.

In a press conference held after the National Assembly Advisory Committee meeting to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the Constitution, the Speaker emphasized the importance of maintaining the sanctity of the Constitution and ensuring that Parliament remains the key focus.

“If you want to get out of political polarization, forget what happened in past and move forward and to maintain the sanctity of the Constitution, Parliament would continue to be our main legal source and all institutions would remain under their ambit,” he said while addressing a press conference along with Senator Mian Raza Rabbani after the meeting of the National Assembly Advisory.

Raja Pervez Ashraf said the theme of the Golden Jubilee is ‘My Constitution is the Guarantee of my Freedom”. The Speaker said that historically, the Constitution of 1973 was passed in the State Bank Building Hall and the joint session of the Parliament will also be held on April 10 in the State Bank Building Hall and this building will be preserved in its original shape,” he said. “The golden jubilee celebrations would be held simultaneously at national and international levels. A comprehensive set of activities had been arranged for the celebrations and a three-day convention would be held in the Parliament.”

The Speaker said the National Database Registration Authority (NDRA) was in the final phase to develop a mobile App “Know Your Constitution”, while preparations for quiz competitions, talk shows and other activities were underway. “A memorial will be made about the Golden Jubilee of Constitution and a photo exhibition will be organized displaying the history of Pakistan.”

He said the delegates will be invited to the festivities from all over the world, especially Pakistan-origin parliamentarians from all over the world. “Speakers from friendly countries will also be invited,” he said.

Pervez Ashraf said that Zulfikar Bhutto got the approval of the 1973 Constitution from the entire political leadership and the PPP passed the 18th amendment through which Asif Ali Zardari as President of Pakistan restored the powers of the Parliament.

He said that special golden jubilee coins and stamps will be issued while the National Press Club and Bar Organizations have also been asked to organize special events.

He said three locations for the monument have been considered, one of which will be finalized and the groundbreaking will take place on April 10. “If the country wants to progress, it is necessary that the Parliament is strong and all the institutions should work within their constitutional ambit. We will take every step to protect and maintain the sanctity of the Constitution, the protection of the Constitution and the respect of the Parliament is everyone’s responsibility. This is our country, accusing and criticizing each other will not work. All issues will be solved in Parliament. We are democratic people and believe in democracy,” he said.

To a query, Raja Pervez Ashraf said all political parties would be invited to the golden jubilee celebrations as the Constitution is the document of our unity.

To another query regarding the violation of basic human rights, the Speaker said that Parliament is never silent on human rights violations and its standing committees on Human Rights always take notice of any violation.

Convener National Advisory Committee Former Chairman Senate Mian Raza Rabbani directed to ensure the prominence and long-term stability of the Constitution monument, proposing to consider the D-Choke location for building a constitutional monument.

Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Maryam Aurangzeb briefed the participants about the initiatives like Curtain Raiser and Talk Shows to start the golden jubilee celebrations from 8th April 2023. She also briefed about activities planned by the external publicity wing to arrange specialist events in all foreign diplomatic missions and embassies. She briefed the Advisory Committee about the working and preparations of PTV and Radio Pakistan to celebrate festivities.

Member Advisory Committee Farhatullah Babar said that the implementation of the constitution and commemorating its foundation reminds the sacrifices rendered by every segment of society for a constitutional setup.

Convener Women Parliamentary Shaihida Rahmani said women’s rights which are enshrined in the 1973 Constitution should be taught at all educational levels. She stressed the need to initiate awareness campaigns regarding women’s rights, especially in women’s colleges and universities.

Chairman NADRA briefed the participants that a mobile app “Know Your Constitution” app would be ready by the 10th of April. He also said that the renovation of State Bank Hall would be started after its estimation.