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PDM panel formed to challenge legislation moving at a snail’s pace

By Noor Aftab
November 30, 2021
PDM panel formed to challenge legislation moving at a snail’s pace

ISLAMABAD: A committee formed by the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) to challenge the legislation carried out by the government in the joint session of the parliament is moving at a snail’s pace due to unknown reasons, sources told The News here on Monday.

The sources said the PDM formed the committee headed by former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to make preparations to challenge the legislation in the court of law. “The PDM leadership directed the committee members including former president of the Supreme Court Bar Association Kamran Murtaza and Deputy Secretary General of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PMLN) Attaullah Tarar to consult legal experts over bills such as the use of electronic voting machines, granting internet voting rights to overseas Pakistanis and amendments to a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) ordinance.

It is pertinent to mention here that the government passed 33 bills in the joint session of the parliament on November 17 despite resistance from the opposition parties that later termed it against the spirit of the democratic norms and traditions. These bills included International Court of Justice (Review and Reconsideration) Bill, 2020.

The behind-the-scene interaction revealed to The News that Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Kamran Murtaza and Attaullah Tarar have so far held no meeting to discuss legal ways to challenge the legislation in the court. “None of them made contact with legal practitioners to discuss the issue of the legislation that according to the opposition parties was done against the parliamentary laws and procedures,” the sources said.

Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUIF) Chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has stated that the PDM would challenge the legislation in the court but no visible action by this alliance of the opposition parties has so far been seen, the sources said and added: “Two main parties of PDM PMLN and JUIF are still evaluating the situation and pondering over the repercussions if they move the court against the legislation.”

While replying to the text messages containing few questions, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi stated: “No meeting of the committee has been held so far and no date set to submit an application to the court against the legislation done in the jointing sitting of the parliament.”