Senate passes Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2017

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Senate passes Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2017

The Senate on Tuesday passed "The Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2017" by two third majority.

Eighty four members voted in favour of the bill while one member opposed it.

The bill provides allocation of seats in the National Assembly according to the provisional results of the census 2017 without changing the existing total number of general seats and women seats and retaining the share of the Federally Administrated Tribal Areas.

The bill was moved by Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Shaikh Aftab Ahmed.

According to the proposed reallocation,  Balochistan will get two general seats and one women seat, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa four general and one women seat and Federal Capital will get one general seat in addition to their existing strengthen in the National Assembly. Punjab will lose seven general and two women seats while seats for Sindh and FATA will remain unchanged.

The Council of Common Interest in its meeting held on the 13th of last month approved publication of the provisional results of Census 2017.

The Council also decided that third party validation will be carried out of one percent census blocks proportionately in each province throughout the country selected by random computer ballot, before the final results are compiled.

This will help address reservations and concerns expressed by the Sindh Government, PPP, MQM, PTI, PML(N), JUI(F), JI, QWP, PKMAP, ANP and members of FATA regarding he provisional results.

The percentage of census blocks for which validation is to be carried out may change if so decided by the CCI.

The Senate also passed "The COMSATS University Islamabad Bill, 2017". The bill was moved by Minister for Science and Technology Rana Tanveer Hussain.

The bill is aimed at upgradation of the status of COMSATS Institute of Technology, Islamabad as COMSATS University.

Minister Parliamentary Affairs Shaikh Aftab Ahmed told the House that there is no proposal to sell out key PIA assets such as hotels in New York and Paris.

Responding to a calling attention notice moved by Sehar Kamran, he said the government is taking steps to improve performance of PIA.

To a ministerial response, Shaikh Aftab Ahmed said old gas pipelines and growing demand in the winter season have led to low pressure of gas in various parts of the country.

He said the government is taking steps to overcome this problem by improving gas infrastructure.

The House has been adjourned to meet again at three in the afternoon tomorrow.