ISLAMABAD - PPP and its allied opposition parties in the Senate Friday sought intervention of President Mamnoon Hussain in bringing to end the military operation launched against militants in North Waziristan Agency.
Senator Afrasyab Khattak from ANP, while initiating discussion on commenced motion on current political security situation in the country, asked the president to take immediate notice of the situation in Fata and order for lifting the curfew.
"Where is the President ,” he asked, adding that innocent people including women and children are being killed in Miranshah and Mir Ali areas. He should use his constitutional role and direct the KPK governor to let the injured be taken to hospitals for emergency medical aid.
Senator Khattak also criticised the federal government for not holding Local Bodies elections in Fata (federally administered tribal areas) saying people of the tribal areas were being denied their right to choose their representatives. He said the president by exercising his constitutional powers should introduce reforms to grant a status to Fata equal to other parts of the country, adding that the tribal areas deserved special development package as they have suffered the most in the course of war against terror.
The senator also alleged that security agencies were still creating problems in Balochistan, which should be stopped forthwith. He also spoke about recent incident in Raja Bazzar of Rawalpindi saying the extremist groups were again trying to take advantage of the situation. Senator Khattak also criticised the security agencies for supporting Dafa-e Pakistan Council saying it appears that the security agencies have started outsourcing their operations.
PPP parliamentary leader Mian Raza Rabbani referred to Article 247 and said that the president is duty bound to make efforts for peace in Fata . "President should wake up and exercise his powers under Clause 5 (1) of the Article 247 for peace, adding that the president should initiate efforts for making rules and regulations for lasting peace in the tribal areas.
Leader of the House Raja Zafarul Haq rejected the remarks made Razza Rabbani about the president saying he did not agree to his assertions but he did agree that Fata needs administrative reforms . Raja said he would personally meet the president and brief him about the Fata situation. Senator Moula Bakhsh Chandio from PPP said continuity of democracy and system is essential for the solidarity and security of the country. He feared that if democracy failed‚ our next generations would suffer immensely.
Earlier during the Question Hour, Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique informed the House that Pakistan Railways has so far leased out over 1,000 acres of land in Karachi‚ Peshawar and Lahore . He said that annual income from the said land is Rs158.38 million, adding that an inquiry is underway to investigate the leases given on nominal rates. To a question about Quetta-Chaman track‚ the minister said that PR land has been encroached upon by certain tribes and the Railways will soon start action to retrieve it.
On installing gates at various railways crossings‚ Saad said they have banned any manned or unmanned level crossings. For this purpose‚ over or under head bridges can be constructed by provincial governments or local governments. The minister said Railways has a number of plans to convert its lands into profitable ventures. He said eight locomotives were working on freight services when the PML-N government came to power and the number has now increased to 20. The House was prorogued sine die.