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Lower House strongly condemned Indian attacks from LoC

19 November, 2016

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ISLAMABAD: Legislators in the Lower House on Friday passed a resolution in which they strongly condemned Indian attacks from across the Line of control (LoC), resulting in the martyrdom of seven Pakistani soldiers.

Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Chaudhry Barjees Tahir forward the resolution and expressed deep concern over the tragic incident of unprovoked firing by the Indian forces.

Parliamentarians in the National Assembly took serious cognisance of the unprovoked and barbaric attack on the Pakistani border forces by the Indian Army, resulting in aggression and clashes in the border areas. Through the resolution, the House recognised the sacrifices of the armed forces and paid a glowing tribute to the martyred soldiers for their courage.

Relations between Pakistan and India have been strained for several months, while cross-frontier shelling had intensified in recent weeks leading to deaths of civilians and soldiers stationed along the disputed boundary.

The House was informed that the tensions had been fraught since July when India-held Kashmir (IHK) was rocked by street protests after the killing of famous freedom fighter Burhan Wani. Islamabad launched an international campaign to highlight rights abuses by Indian security forces in IHK.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar laid before the House the Companies Ordinance, 2016.

Explaining the salient features of the ordinance, the minister said it would replace the Companies Ordinance, 1984. He said the ordinance had been prepared taking all the stakeholders into confidence and keeping in view the international best practices to provide ease of doing business.

He said the ordinance would empower the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) to probe money laundering, terror financing and fraud. This ordinance has recently been promulgated to replace the previous 32-year-old ordinance. He said that consultations were held for more than a year to bring in this comprehensive law.

Dar said the proposed law discussed in detail the perspective of offshore companies, and would make companies bound to declare their investors and beneficiaries. He informed the House that major penalties had been proposed in case of non-disclosure of assets of the companies.

On the other hand, the National Assembly was informed that the government was taking concrete steps to deal with the increasing cases of hepatitis in the country. The information was given by Parliamentary Secretary for National Health Services Dr Darshan while responding to a calling attention notice moved by Khalida Mansoor and others regarding rampant increase in the number of hepatitis patients.

He said that the hepatitis B vaccine was available, whereas there was no vaccine of hepatitis C. He, however, said its treatment was available.

Dr Darshan said that doctors were also being imparted training for the treatment of hepatitis patients. He said the government was also working for the provision of clean drinking water to the people, as contaminated water was the main cause of hepatitis.

To another calling attention notice moved by Dr Nafisa Shah and others regarding explosion in an oil tanker at Gadani ship-breaking yard, Minister for Ports and Shipping Mir Hasil Bizenjo said two committees had been formed to investigate the incident. He said the committee formed by the federal government had already presented its report to the prime minister, while a report of the committee formed by the Balochistan government was being prepared.

The minister said the government had announced compensation for the victims of the incident and three officers had been suspended for showing negligence.

Bizenjo said the Gadani shipyard lacked facilities like fire tenders, and added that safety measures were being improved at the facility.

The minister said that 28 people were killed and 50 others wounded in the tragic incident. "Laws for ship breaking are being prepared," he maintained.

Meanwhile, Mahmood Achakzai demanded a judicial probe into the incident. The house also offered Fateha for Jehangir Bader, Naveed Qamar's father, ANP leader Haji Adeel, the Pak Army soldiers and those who had died in the Gadani incident.

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