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Parliamentary debate over 'ideology of Pakistan' disallowed

Islamabad, Sep 14 (IANS) Pakistan's National Assembly has disallowed a private member's bill demanding removal of the phrase 'ideology of Pakistan' from the statute book.

Thursday, September 14, 2006 | 12:18:26 PM IST (+05:30 GMT)
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Islamabad, Sep 14 (IANS) Pakistan's National Assembly has disallowed a private member's bill demanding removal of the phrase 'ideology of Pakistan' from the statute book.

Treasury bench member M.P. Bhandara, elected to the religious minorities' seat, sought to introduce the bill, but the treasury and opposition joined hands to oppose it.

Speaker Chaudhry Ameer Hussain disallowed the bill's introduction after sensing opposition to it from both sides in the house, The Nation newspaper reported.

Bhandara, who is Parsi by faith, owns the country's only private brewery.

Explaining the reason for moving the bill, Bhandara said every word in a written constitution must be defined. He contended that 'ideology of Pakistan' was not defined.

He was of the view that the lack of definition caused 'confusions' and said the house should debate it to be able to define it.

Opposing the bill vehemently, both the government and opposition members said the ideology of Pakistan meant 'creation of the country in the name of Islam'.

'Therefore, there could be no second thought and any debate allowed ... would not only create confusion but would also challenge the basis of the creation of Pakistan,' Parliamentary Affairs Minister Sher Afgan Niazi said.

The speaker pointed out that the private member had merely sought removal of the words and not sought any debate.

The lone member to support the debate was Riaz Hussain Pirzada from the treasury benches. He said debate could be 'a refresher of the history for the new generation to know and understand'.

Copyright : Indo-Asian News Service
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