ISLAMABAD: The Senate saw three back-to-back walkouts on Tuesday amidst a charged environment. The walkouts were staged after an exchange of hot words between the PTI’s Mohsin Aziz and the PPP’s Bahramand Tangi during question hour.
Mohsin Aziz had sought information about the number stray dogs in the federal capital. Bahramand Tangi flew into a rage after Mohsin Aziz complained about an increasing of dogs and pigs in Islamabad’s F-6 and F-7 sectors.
A walkout by the opposition followed.
The second walkout was staged by the opposition following the rejection of an adjournment motion by 26-19 votes on the country’s economic situation. Mohsin Aziz had sought to move the motion.
The third walkout was staged by minority lawmakers after Kamran Michael protested the attitude of the ministry of inter-faith harmony.
The upper house was informed during question hour that efforts were afoot to reduce the Railways losses by improving its service and a land business plan had been prepared to bring down its revenue-expenditure gap.
Shahadat Awan, the Minister of State for Law, told the House during question hour that 190 passenger carriages and 750 high-capacity wagons would be assembled locally under a transfer of technology agreement with China.
The minister said upgradation of infrastructure under ML-1 would go a long way in modernising the Pakistan Railways. A proposal is under consideration to run trains on electricity after the completion of ML-1, he added.
Responding to a call attention notice, Shahadat Awan said the government had recently reduced the prices of 20 essential medicines. He also recalled the increase in prices of medicines during the PTI rule.
In reply to another call attention notice moved by Senator Danesh Kumar, the minister said work was in progress on dualisation of the 790-kilometre highway from Karachi to Quetta and Chaman. He assured the house that this highway would be completed soon to ensure a smooth and safe flow of traffic.
The senator pointed out that the Karachi-Chaman-Quetta highway had claimed over 5,000 lives during this period. “The reason for such an unusually high fatality ratio is that the road was not dualised despite a number of promises.”
Published in Dawn, February 8th, 2023
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