Senate seeks reply from FO on report of allowing Pakistani citizen to visit Israel

Senate seeks reply from FO on report of allowing Pakistani citizen to visit Israel

ISLAMABAD: Chairman Senate Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani directed Senate Secretariat to seek a reply from Foreign Office about news report that it allowed a Pakistani citizen of Jewish faith to travel to Israel.

Senator Mian Raza Rabbani raised the issue in Senate quoting reports that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs allowed a Pakistani Jew to travel to Israel. The citizen applied to Foreign Office for permission to travel. The father of the citizen was Muslim and his mother a Jew and their child adopted the Jewish faith. According to the Foreign Office, the Prime Minister Secretariat granted the permission for his travel, the Senator claimed.

Senator Raza Rabbani asked as to how the Foreign Office gave permission when Pakistani passport holders could travel to all countries except Israel.

He said if there was softening of relations with Israel then the. Parliament should be informed about any shift in Pakistan’s foreign policy and whether there were any back channel contacts with Israel?

Chairman Senate directed the Senate Secretariat to get a reply from Foreign Office in written.

Senator Behramand Tangi raised the issue that the Prime Minister removed chairman of Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited despite the fact that a report did not held him responsible for gas shortages in the country. The Chairman Senate refused to send the matter to a committee calling it an administrative decision. Senator Muhammad Akram took up the issue of accident of death of 27 persons in coach and bus collision in Hub recently and said steps should be taken to stop such incidents in future. He said the area where the accident occurred lacked health facilities.

Senator Dr Ghous Niazi drew attention to the problems of shareholders who were not getting dividend earnings from the big companies. The chairman referred the matter to Standing Committee of Finance.

Senator Sassi Palijo spoke on the matter of opening of Khokhrapar Munabao border in Sindh and said people had to travel long distances so the border should be opened.

If multiple borders could be opened in Punjab then it should be done in Sindh too. Rajhastan and Tharparkar areas along the border shared common culture and tradition, she opined.

The Senator said the matter should be discussed in the Parliament as opening of borders would facilitate travel and travelling of people.

Senator Sirajul Haq observed the government increased prices of medicines by 15 percent but practically the increase was far higher. A medicine sold for Rs 548 was now sold for Rs 921.

He said taxes should be imposed on capitalists and agriculturalists but the increase in prices of medicines should be taken back. The Chairman sent the matter to the relevant committee.

Senator Mir Kabir Ahmed Shahi said floods in Balochistan few years back affected lives of thousands of people and after delay Rs four billion were approved but the federal and provincial governments allocated only Rs 500 million and Rs 640 million respectively. He demanded release of funds for the flood affectees.

He said citizens in Pasni were fearful that they would not get rightful compensation for land purchased from them for setting up oil refinery by Saudi Arabia.

He said he would write a letter to Saudi ambassador on the issue. The Senate should take up the issue of giving employment to low grade employees in the project of oil refinery, he stressed.

Senator Manzoor Kakar said crops of farmers were affected in Balochistan due to widespread loadshedding, adding gas was discovered in Sui but some of its areas were still without gas.

He said areas like Kalat, Hana Orak and interior Balochistan were without gas. Balochistan was not getting jobs according to its quota, he said adding youth of his province needed jobs.