Parliamentary Committee on Minorities presents report to President Zardari, Govt to amend Constitution to increase non-Muslims seats

The Parliamentary Committee on Minorities appointed by the President to look into the grievances of Hindu community on Tuesday called on President Asif Ali Zardari here at Bilawal House.Those, who called on the President included Senator Maula Bux Chandio, MNA Lal Chand and Senator Hari Ram Kishori Lal.The Committee presented a preliminary report to the President on the grievances of the Hindu community in the country.Sindh Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah was also present on the occasion of report presentation.Spokesperson to the President Senator Farhatullah Babar said that it may be recalled the President had appointed a four-member Committee comprising Senator Maula Bux Chandio, MNA Lal Chand, Senator Hari Ram Kishori Lal and Dr. Khatumal Jeewan onAugust 10 to visit various districts of Sindh and meet the people from Hindu community and report on their grievances.The Committee informed the President about its visits and the meetings held with members of Hindu community thus far.
President appreciated the committee for visiting different areas and preparing a preliminary report on the issues facing the Hindus. He reiterated the commitment of the government to provide every protection to the minorities and to safeguarding their constitutional rights. He said that no one would be allowed to impose its agenda upon the minorities as it goes against the teachings of Islam and the fundamental principles of our constitution. The minorities would not be allowed to be discriminated against and they would be provided full protection of law, he continued.
The president said that the minorities have every right to practice their faith freely and it was the responsibility of the government to create an enabling environment for them to contribute their share in the nation-building process.
On this occasion, the president also recounted various measures taken for the minorities in the country and said that Pakistan People’ Party (PPP) government is committed to protecting the rights of the minorities as equal citizens of the state. He advised the committee to continue working and looking into the grievances of the minorities and reports of violation of their rights.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf on Tuesday said that the government in consultation with its allies would be bringing a constitutional amendment to increase the seats of non-Muslims in the National Assembly and the provincial assemblies. He was talking to an ANP delegation led by Pervaiz Khan Advocate, which called on him at his Parliament’s House Chamber and discussed the legislative business of the current session of the Parliament.The Prime Minister said that the amendment would send a very strong and positive message to the world about the government’s efforts to give voice to the non-Muslim Pakistanis.The Prime Minister appreciated the support of Awami National Party (ANP) to uphold the Constitution, rule of law and democracy in the country.The delegation comprised of Pir Haider Ali Shah, Istiqbal Khan, Himayat Ullah Mayar, Ms Jameela Begum and Khursheed Begum.

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