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PTI Chairman and MNA Imran Khan and members of the KPK Assembly sitting on stage during the workshop on the “Right to Information Law” organised by the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa at a local hotel. —INP Photo
PTI Chairman and MNA Imran Khan and members of the KPK Assembly sitting on stage during the workshop on the “Right to Information Law” organised by the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa at a local hotel. —INP Photo

ISLAMABAD: Taking part in a discussion on the Right to Information Act, which will be introduced in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan has said the law will make the provincial government speak the truth.

Speaking at a workshop on Friday, he said transparency was necessary for democracy to flourish as it helped in improving governance and reducing corruption.

The workshop was organised by the Mishal Pakistan group in collaboration with the KP’s information ministry.

Opposing military operation in Karachi, the PTI chief underlined the need to depoliticise Sindh police through reforms and other changes. In reference to the 1992 military operation in the city, Mr Khan said both police and the public had to face dangerous consequences and the situation this time around was totally unfavourable for the army to take any action because of its engagement in Waziristan.

The PTI chief also announced opening of the Governor House in Peshawar to welfare activities, while demanding demolishing the wall of Lahore’s Governor House to create space for libraries and playgrounds.

Information law was the most important component of his party’s manifesto through which the PTI-led government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa would ensure transparency and accountability in its affairs, he said.

Other major points soon to be implemented included setting up of an independent commission, empowerment of people at grassroots level through introduction of local government system and total overhauling of educational and health systems, Mr Khan added.

Provincial Information Secretary Azmat Haneef Orakzai while explaining salient features of the information ordinance said its constitutional life was 90 days hence it would be laid before the provincial assembly for adoption as an act.

The ordinance envisages setting up a commission to be headed by a retired senior government servant as chief information commissioner within 120 days. Other three members include a retired judge of a high court to act as chief justice, an advocate to be chosen by the bar council and a civil society representative to be engaged by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.

Those having grievances of not being provided the required information will have a right to lodge a complaint with the commission and the case will be decided within 60 days.

The commission will not only order disclosing information but will impose a fine from Rs250 per day up to a maximum of Rs25,000 on official found obstructing an activity falling in the ambit of ordinance.

Adviser to KP Chief Minister on economic affairs Rafaqatullah Babar said that the law makes it a penal offence on those found obstructing access to any record or to the performance by a public body, destroying record without lawful authority and interfering in commission’s working. Anyone found guilty of anyone offence will be fined up to Rs5,000 or imprisoned for two years.

Balochistan and Sindh had introduced similar laws in 2005 and 2006 respectively but the KP law was being dubbed by experts more progressive since it envisaged setting up of an information commission.

Comments (10) Closed

ssf Aug 31, 2013 09:01am

Imran Khan does not live in Karachi, the city is practicaly under the control of mafia and other crimnal elements of political parties who kill each other at will. Every other means have been tried to control that for many years with no success. The army should be depolyed because army is apolitical and has the means to control such violence

Danial Aug 31, 2013 09:35am

"Anyone found guilty of anyone offence will be fined up to Rs5,000 or imprisoned for two years." Let me read this again and laugh..Rs 5000. What is that saying Punishment fits the crime. Do you serioulsy think Rs5,000 will deter people what this law is trying people not to do.

ali Aug 31, 2013 10:18am

Only muttahida understands Karachi.

Khalid Aug 31, 2013 09:07pm

Imran khan is opening the KP governor house for public activities. He should also open his extreamly big house in Islamabad for such activities.

Muhammad Farooq Aug 31, 2013 09:08pm

what is the alternative solution to military operation in Karachi? police reform and depolitising police? maybe but these are long term goals. Right now there is a need to stop bloodshed in Karachi without any delay. It cannot wait for police reforms.

Manish Gupte, PhD Aug 31, 2013 10:44pm

Pakistan's CJ had spoken about root cause analysis for Karachi's voilence. That approach ensure stable long term solution.

Dawar Naqvi Sep 01, 2013 02:38am

Fair and Impartial Military Operation is only the solution. Same Imran Khan was asking for Military Operation few years back.

Yawar Sep 01, 2013 08:10am

The people of Karachi should determine if the army should be asked to help clean up the city of criminals, terrorists and extortionists.

khanm Sep 01, 2013 06:30pm

Why are we in this mess cos we live in a lawless society? Where money has become our God

Harinder Sep 02, 2013 06:35am

Pathans are eying to capture the Rich Karachi town of Pakistan from the Mujhairs and Sindhi people by use of violence and intimidation . Army will act as a spoiler to their hidden agenda .