Electoral reforms to be in place before next general elections, NA told


-File photo —File Photo

ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly has been informed that ninety-one discoveries of oil and gas have been made during the tenure of present government which is a record.         

During the question hour, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi told the House that despite depletion, overall indigenous oil and gas production has increased.

To a question, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said  steps are being taken to launch new gas supply schemes.

Answering a question, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources said Pak-Iran Gas Pipeline Project is still not implemented due to international sanctions.

Replying to a question, Law Minister Zahid Hamid told the House that election reforms are at final stage and hoped that these will be in place before the next general elections.

The Minister hoped that promulgation of the Election Act, 2017 would simplify the laws and strengthen the electoral process.

Answering a question, Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Shaikh Aftab Ahmad told the House that the government is committed to ensure human rights of all citizens as envisaged under the Constitution. He said that action plan for human rights approved by the Prime Minister last year is being implemented.

Responding to criticism of the Opposition Leader Syed Khurshid Shah, Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Shaikh Aftab Ahmad said maximum development work in the country was carried out during the tenures of the PML-N government.

He said CPEC is a great achievement of the government which brought the world closer to Pakistan.

He said the Prime Minister taking along all the four provinces for development and prosperity of the country.

Earlier, Leader of the Opposition Syed Khurshid Shah alleged that the government wants to weaken the federation.

Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif stressed the need for constituting a multiparty Parliamentary Commission to investigate into the recent utterances made by the former Pakistani Ambassador to US Hussain Haqqani in the regime of Pakistan Peoples Party.

Speaking at a point of order in the House, he said it is a matter of breach of national security at highest level and it should be investigated threadbare.

Answering a point raised by Shafqat Mahmood, the Defence Minister said that no new armed forces brigade from Pakistan has been deployed in Saudi Arabia.

He categorically stated that Pakistan was not and will never involve in Yemen conflict and rather wants to play a role of mediation between the two Muslim countries.

Leader of the Opposition Syed Khurshid Shah while supporting the idea, said a joint committee should be constituted to probe the matter. He said in addition issues relating to Memogate Scandal and Dawn Leaks should also been investigated.

Shafqat Mahmood of PTI also supported the proposal of constituting a committee to discuss and investigate the matter.

Later, the House was adjourned due lack of quorum to meet again tomorrow morning at 10:30.—Radio Pakistan