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January 22, 2019

Senate calls for steps to preserve Gwadar demographic balance

National

January 22, 2019

ISLAMABAD: The Senate on Monday called on the government to take measures to preserve the demographic balance and ownership rights of local population of Gwadar and protect the same against the expected large scale migration into Gwadar in the wake of CPEC projects.

The House, which met with its Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani in the chair, passed a unanimous resolution, moved by Senator Kauda Babar from Balochistan, urging the government to take certain steps in the wake of projects under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in Gwadar. It was a private members day on the opening day of the fresh session amid downpour.

The resolution reads: “This House is of opinion that, while it is imperative to embrace opportunities of the 21st century brought about by the CPEC, it is equally important to safeguard the ownership and inherent rights of the people of Gwadar.

“Keeping the development and protection of rights of the people of Gwadar in view, the House recommended that the government should take effective steps to protect and promote the rights of local fishermen and to provide them alternate sources of income under the CPEC in case they lose their livelihood as a result of any project of CPEC,” the House said through the resolution.

It also called upon the government to take steps for provision of vocational and other training to the local people of Gwadar in order to bring them up to the requirements of the modern times and to enable them to cope with the challenges and opportunities to be brought by the CPEC

The Senate asked the government to coordinate with the provincial government of Balochistan to promote education in the area under the umbrella of CPEC and take necessary measures to ensure that local people are given preference in skilled labour force and to ensure maximum recruitment of unskilled labour force from amongst the locals in all projects of CPEC in the area.

The House also adopted another resolution, moved by Senator Ateeq, recommending that the government should ensure the availability of essential lifesaving medicines in hospitals under the administrative control of the federal government and should also make it mandatory for the administration of those hospitals to display the lists of such medicines for the information of the general public.

Through yet another resolution, moved by Senator Javed Abbasi, the House recommended that the government should take immediate steps for the creation of Hazara Electric Supply Company.

While speaking on the resolution, leader of the House, Shibli Faraz said that the government has planned to restructure all the electric power distribution companies (Discos).

The House passed a bill further to amend the Federal Universities Ordinance, 2002 [The Federal Universities (Amendment) Bill, 2017], moved by Senator Mian Mohammad Ateeq Shaikh. The bill is aimed at making it mandatory for the universities under the federal government to keep internship for the students as mandatory part of the curriculum.

Another bill moved by him, further to amend the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues Act, 2010 [The Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues (Amendment) Bill, 2018], was referred to Standing Committee of Law and Justice with a comments by the Chair to report back to the House within a week.

Some senators, belonging to religious parties, raised objection on the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues (Amendment) Bill, 2018 and they proposed that opinion of the Council of Islamic Ideology should be taken before taking up the bill. They also pointed out the lack of quorum in the House; the chair ordered ringing of bells rang for five minutes and the House was found to be in order.

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