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August 22, 2019

NA body on Law rejects Child Marriage Restraint Bill

National

August 22, 2019

ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly Standing Committee on Law and Justice after a detailed discussion on Wednesday rejected ‘The Child Marriage Restraint (Amendment) Bill, 2019’ aimed at fixing minimum age of marriage for girls at 18 with majority vote. The same bill was allowed to be introduced by minority member Dr. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani as private member by the National Assembly by 72 to 50 votes.

The introduction of the Child Marriage Restrain (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on April 30 last also created a split within the ranks of the treasury benches as some cabinet members including Minister for Religious Affairs Noorul Haq Qadari and Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Mohammad Khan were prominent amongst those opposed the proposed legislation. Minister for Human Rights Dr. Shireen Mazari and majority of female parliamentarians had supported introduction of the bill.

However, on Wednesday the majority of members of National Assembly who are also members of the Standing Committee on Law and Justice with Riaz Fatyana MNA in the chair opposed the bill at time of voting.

At the time of voting, the media persons and officials were asked to leave the committee room. “The bill was rejected with more than double votes majority,” one of the members requesting not to be named told The News.

The Committee considered “The Child Marriage Restraint (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (Moved by Dr. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, MNA)” after detail deliberations the Committee recommends with majority that the Bill may not be passed by the Assembly, an announcement from Secretary of the Committee said.

The Committee also considered the bills “The Muslim Family Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (Section 4) (Government Bill)” and “The Muslim Family Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (Section 7) (Government Bill)” at the request of the Ministry and the Committee deferred the Bill till its next meeting.

The Committee considered “The Code of Civil Procedure (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (Government Bill)”. After detail deliberations the Committee recommended that the Bill may be passed by the Assembly. However Dr. Nafeesa Shah and Ms. Aliya Kamran submitted their note of dissent.

The Committee was briefed by the Home Department, government of the Punjab about the report of the judicial commission regarding terrorist attack on Sri Lankan Team in Lahore. The Committee deferred the said agenda with direction to the representative of the Home Department government of the Punjab, and Establishment Division that the officers named in the report of the judicial commission be taken to task and disciplinary proceedings as per concerned efficiency and discipline rules be initiated against them at the earliest under intimation to this committee.

The Committee was also briefed about the incident of murder of Judges in District Jail Sialkot. The committee appreciated the action taken by the Prison Department, government of the Punjab.

The Committee members were dissatisfied with the briefing and response of the Police Department, government of the Punjab and showed its displeasure for the poor performance and action of the said department. The Committee deferred the same agenda item with direction to the representative of the Home Department, government of the Punjab, and Establishment Division that the officials responsible for the incident shall be taken to task and disciplinary proceedings as per concerned efficiency and discipline rules be initiated against them at the earliest under intimation to the committee.

The meeting was attended by MNAs Attaullah, Lal Chand, Muhammad Farooq Azam Malik, Ms. Kishwar Zehra, Ms. Maleeka Ali Bokhari, Muhammad Sanaullah Khan Masti Khail, Malik Muhammad Ehsanullah Tiwana, Mehmood Bashir Virk, Usman Ibraheem, Ms. Nafeesa Shah, Ms. Aliya Kamran and Dr. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, Chairman Council of Islamic Ideology and other officials.

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