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March 13, 2018

PA resounds with issue of constituencies’ delimitation


March 13, 2018

LAHORE: Fresh delimitations of the constituencies remained a hot topic in the Punjab Assembly session on Monday in which members across the divide expressed reservations over the issue.

The PA session, which started with a delay of around two hours with Speaker Rana Mohammed Iqbal Khan in the chair, held question hour related to the departments of primary and secondary healthcare as well higher education. The minister concerned and Parliamentary Secretary Khwaja Imran Nazir and Mehwish Sultana responded to the queries of legislators.

Later, speaking on a point of order, Opposition leader Mian Mehmoodur Rasheed alleged that new delimitations of constituencies had been done in the office of Federal Minister Khwaja Saad Rafique. He said that entire NA-122 constituency had been wiped out in fresh delimitations whereas his own constituency had been annexed with River Ravi bed, which was very unfair. Situation got interesting when Speaker Rana Mohammed Iqbal Khan also expressed reservations over the fresh delimitations of constituencies and stated that two new constituencies had been carved out from the area from where he was elected to the assembly. Punjab Minister Khalil Tahir Sindhu said on the occasion that it was true that members had reservations regarding fresh delimitations, but the allegations that all this had been done in the office of Khwaja Saad Rafique was not true. Mian Aslam Iqbal, the PTI legislator, on the occasion stated that his constituency, which was PP-148 till 2013 had been divided into five new constituencies and asked whether it had been done to any other ruling party member.

Earlier, during a question hour session, Dr Nausheen Hamid raised the question about the use of narcotics at the University of Engineering and Technology (UET). Responding to her question, Parliamentary Secretary for HEC Mehwish Sultana said that there had been nothing like that in the UET and the Punjab government had already launched an operation against the use of narcotics in colleges and universities. She also said the government had also launched an awareness campaign to sensitise students about the harms of narcotics.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf MPA Dr Murad Raas, on a point of order, strongly condemned the shoe-hurling incident with former prime minister Nawaz Sharif at Jamia Naeemia. He said that every citizen must show respect to the political leadership. The PA session was adjourned after it failed to meet quorum, which was pointed out by MPA Ehsan Riaz Fatyana.

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