ISLAMABAD Urging the parliamentarians to pass the 18th Constitutional Amendment without any further delay, President Asif Ali Zardari has said that upholding of supremacy of the Constitution requires every pillar of the state to work in its constitutional limits. No pillar of the state should trample on the domain of others, the President said while addressing the joint sitting of Parliament on Monday afternoon. Each organ of the state must work within the parameters of the Constitution for stability and development. We believe in reconciliation and not confrontation, he said. After the martyrdom of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, some had advised confrontation but we said that democracy was the best revenge. Today they will admit that our stand has been vindicated, President Zardari said. Marking the beginning of the third parliamentary year, the President said that the PPP respected the judiciary. The Government has enhanced pay scales, allowances and perks of members of judiciary so that easy access to justice for every one could be ensured. He added. According to the President, the 18th Constitutional Amendment would make the Constitution truly democratic and federal in character and restore provincial rights and parliamentary sovereignty. Zardari pointed out that consensus on constitutional reforms bill proved that Parliament could deliver given political will. Strengthening of the Parliament has been the corner stone of our political philosophy. Shaheed Benazir Bhutto refused to weaken democracy by rejecting offers to boycott Parliament when her party had only 17 members in the National Assembly. He said in line with this philosophy in November last, he gave up the National Command Authority and placed it under the Parliament . Recalling pervious subversions of the Constitution, he regretted that the pillars of the state validated the subversion of the Constitution. The President said the nation can now take pride that it has closed that sorry chapter. Speaking about achievements of the Government during the second parliamentary year, Zardari said Parliament passed a record number of bills including those regarding empowerment of women. The Prime Minister personally attended the parliamentary sessions 96 times which is again a record. Referring to the water issue, the President said the Government is not only raising the issue with India at every international forum but also building small and medium sized dams in the country to address the problem. He said work on 32 such dams has already been started. Talking about foreign policy, President Zardari said that Pakistan wants honourable and peaceful settlement of all outstanding disputes including the Jammu and Kashmir and water issue with India. He said Pakistan wants resolution of the Kashmir dispute in accordance with the aspirations of the Kashmiri people. He said that dialogue alone could ensure peace and understanding in the region. We do not want an armed race in the region. However, a disproportionate increase in military budget by New Delhi does not help the cause of arms reduction. He said we would continue to strengthen cooperation within the SAARC framework. President said Pakistan greatly values its ties with Muslim countries. He said partnership with the United States and Europe has strengthened over the past year. He said that the strategic dialogue with the United States is aimed at addressing core issues of Pakistan. He said Pakistans focus has been and will remain trade and not aid. The President said the international community is increasingly realising the importance of Pakistan and its commitment in fighting militancy and strengthening democracy. He said that they are committed to upholding the freedom of media. The Government will work with all stakeholders to create an atmosphere of self-regulation without state interference. The President announced that an inter-faith complex is being planned in Islamabad and interfaith harmony committees are being established at district level. Steps have also been taken to integrate the special people in the mainstream of national life. The President, recounting the steps for the welfare of the labours, said sacked employees have been restored besides regularising the contract employees. Now, a worker can no longer be dismissed from service for no reason. The workers have been given the right to seek legal remedies against dismissal. Trade union activities have been restored. The Benazir Employees Stock Option Scheme has been introduced which offers 12 percent stock shares to workers in state-run enterprises. About the accountability, the President said the Government believes in across the board accountability of all and not selective. Zardari said after long years, the NFC Award was finalised with consensus once again making history. The Council of Common Interests has been reconstituted. The President noted that reforms in FATA and amendments to the FCR have been finalised after consultations with the stakeholders. These reforms, he said, will soon be implemented. He said political reforms have been launched in Gilgit-Baltistan where a woman has also been appointed as Governor. The President said the Year 2010 should be Year of Building of National Consensus on holding elections to local bodies. It should also be the year to mobilise the youth and draw them into the mainstream of national life. We need to protect them from sliding into militancy, he added. A commission has been set up on missing persons, he added. Referring to UN inquiry report on the assassination of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto, the President said the report would soon be submitted. He said the Government is mindful of its obligation to carry out a national investigation into the tragedy. He pointed out that foreign exchange reserves have already increased and the stock exchange has made impressive gains without any artificial inducements. Remittances have increased by 25% a year due to new incentives. For the first the remittances in one month exceeded 800 million dollars in September last. The President said groundbreaking steps have been taken towards a welfare state. These include the Benazir Income Support Programme to break the cycle of poverty and Digital Smart Cards for transparency of the programme. Interest free loan of Rs 300,000 under Waseela-e-Haq Programme is being given to the female head of the family to empower women. About terrorism, President Zardari said that this menace has been the greatest threat to the national security in recent times. He assured that Pakistan will take this fight to the finish. He said that peace will be made with those willing to give up violence and use force against those who challenge writ of the state. He made it clear that the Government will not allow the use of its soil for terrorism activities against any other country. He said Pakistan would continue its efforts for a Marshall Plan for rebuilding Pakistan and the region. He pledged that the sovereignty of Pakistan will be safeguarded at all costs. Winding up his speech, President Zardari said hoped that the 18th Constitutional amendment would serve the cause of democracy but added that this is not the end of the road. Our journey has just begun, he added. He said the benefits of democracy must translate into a tangible dividend that is visible in peoples lives. He said as we move on we must also learn from our mistakes. Earlier, when President Asif Ali Zardari came on rostrum, PML-Q legislator Farzana Mushtaq strongly protested against the renaming of NWFP and staged walkout from the House while Senator Jamal Leghari from the same party kept chanting slogans for the respect of judiciary, however the desk thumping from the treasury benches was as high as nothing was to hear that what Laghari further said. However he left the floor of the House as President Asif Ali Zardari started his speech. Meanwhile Marvi Memon again from the same party kept raising the issues.