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Senate ‘rejected’ the requisition on Jaranwala incident

In a surprising turn of events, the Senate of Pakistan has rejected a requisition to discuss the recent Jaranwala mayhem. This decision has raised eyebrows and concerns, as it marks an unprecedented move by the Senate secretariat. The rejection is attributed to “unmatched signatures” on the requisition, leading to questions about the secretariat’s authority to verify signatures without directly contacting the concerned members, Dawn News reported.

The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) expressed disappointment over the rejection, as twenty-seven senators had submitted a signed requisition notice on September 1st. This notice, submitted by PPP Senator Shahadat Awan, aimed to invoke Article 54 and Article 61 of the Constitution for summoning a Senate session.

Also Read: Jaranwala incident: Attack on Christians

However, on September 6th, the Senate secretariat declared that the signatures of five PPP senators, Farooq H. Naek, Mian Raza Rabbani, Palwasha Mohammad Zai Khan, Rubina Khalid, and Shamim Afridi did not match their signatures on the roll of members. Senator Muhammad Akram’s signatures were also questioned.

Surprisingly, the secretariat did not contact any of these six senators to confirm their signatures, leading to the rejection of the requisition.

PPP Secretary General, Farhatullah Babar expressed dismay over this decision, emphasizing that it is customary to verify signatories’ authenticity by making a simple phone call. He suggested that some individuals may not have wanted to discuss the Jaranwala mayhem, which involved the desecration of churches and the looting of properties belonging to Christians.

This rejection sends a disheartening message to non-Muslim minorities, further undermining the credibility of the parliament. While a requisition notice may seem minor, it is a way for the house to assert itself on issues of national importance.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court is set to address the tragic incidents in Jaranwala, where more than 20 churches and over a dozen homes of the Christian community were torched or ransacked. Samuel Makson, Director for Human Rights of the Voice of Christians International, has filed an application seeking the court’s attention to these incidents. The court has previously ruled on minority rights and their protection in a 2014 judgment, emphasizing the importance of religious and social tolerance in the country.

Courtesy: Dawn News

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