QUETTA: Senate Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani has said that parliament is the weakest institution in the country as in the past it was not allowed to function by imposing martial law and using the notorious Article 58-2(b) and now ‘new tactics’ are being used to defang it.
Addressing a national seminar on “How peace could be returned to Quetta” held under the Shaheed Baz Mohammad Kakar Foundation (SBMKF) here on Wednesday, he said the Constitution had determined the parameters for all state institutions and they must work under these boundaries.
The Senate chairman underlined the need for developing a consensus on a framework under which all state institutions work within the domain of the 1973 Constitution and offered them the platform of the Senate for dialogue on constitutional issues in this regard.
“The ongoing confrontation between different state institutions is very harmful to the democratic system and the country,” he warned.
Says no one needs to seek certificate of patriotism from ‘Islamabad or Rawalpindi’
Mr Rabbani urged the executive, judiciary and security establishment to thrash out a working relationship with all state institutions so that they could work under the Constitution.
“There is no need for any individual or a group of individuals to seek a certificate of patriotism from Islamabad or Rawalpindi,” he said, adding that people were equal in the eyes of the law.
“Institutions are losing strength due to our wrong policies which is harmful for both the people and the country,” he said, adding that without reaching a consensus on constitutional issues, the fight against terrorism, rampant poverty and anarchy could not succeed.
He said the executive was seen invading and trying to dominate the parliament and the judiciary which was wrong and undemocratic, adding that all state institutions should function within their constitutional limits.
Mr Rabbani paid tribute to Baz Mohammad Kakar and his associates, who had lost their lives in a terrorist attack on Quetta’s Civil Hospital on Aug 8 last year. At least 72 people, mostly lawyers, were killed in the attack.
He regretted that despite the passage of one year after the tragic incident, “we have not achieved any progress in defending the inalienable right or constitutional and democratic rights of the people. Rather we have gone backward in this aspect”.
He said the biggest task was supremacy of the Constitution which ensured democratic rule over the country.
Mr Rabbani said the government had created a special division for the security of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, but the state and its security institutions had miserably failed to defend the precious lives of citizens.
The seminar was also addressed by Pakistan Peoples Party leader Aitzaz Ahsan, SBMKF chairman Dr Lal Mohammad Kakar, BNP-Mengal secretary Senator Jahanzeb Jamaldini, Baloch National Movement president Dr Abdul Hayee Baloch, Leader of the Opposition in the Balochistan Assembly Maulana Abdul Wasey, Senator Kabir Muhammad Shai and Nawab Mohammad Khan Shahwani of the National Party, Hazara Democratic Party president Abdul Khaliq Hazara, Maulana Abdul Qadir Loni of JUI-Nazaryati, Abdul Mateen Akhundzada of Jamaat-i-Islami, ANP Balochistan president Asghar Khan Achakzai and senior lawyer Shah Mohammad Jatoi. They paid rich tributes to the martyrs of the Quetta carnage.
Published in Dawn, August 3rd, 2017