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Cases older than 10 years cannot be re-opened, accountability bill proposes

Published Oct 08, 2012 07:32pm


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A view of National Assembly. — File Photo

ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Commission Bill 2012 was presented in the National Assembly on Monday, DawnNews reported.

The bill was presented by Federal law Minister Farooq. H. Naek.

The proposed bill, if passed, would be applied on all people bearing public and government offices but the President of Pakistan would enjoy immunity over this.

According to the bill, cases older than October 1, 2002 can not be reopened.

The chairman of the commission will either be a retired judge of the Supreme Court or a Grade-22 officer. Similarly, the deputy chairman will be a retired judge of the high courts or a Grade-21 officer, the bill draft added.

The chairman will be appointed by the president for three years after holding talks with the prime minister and the opposition parties.

The bill was sent to National Assembly’s standing committee over law and justice for further consideration. The committee will send back the draft of the bill to the parliament by Oct 12.

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) showed its opposition when the bill was presented in the lower House. PML-N’s Zahid Hamid said that it was not the same bill on which there was a consensus in the standing committee.

Adding that, he said that the recommendations of the PML-N were not included in the bill.

The PML-N was of the view that accountability should be started from 1947 and the head of the commission should be any judge currently serving.

Awami National Party (ANP) supported PML-N’s stance over the bill. ANP’s Pervez Khattak said that his party was also not taken into confience over this bill.

Minister for Law Farooq H Naek said that the previous bill had been withdrawn under the rules and with the permission of the Speaker. If the opposition has any reservations about the present bill, it should deliberate on the bill at the committee meeting, he added.

He said this House waited for that bill for more than two years and the draconian accountability law of Musharraf era had been in vogue, which was opposed by both the government and the opposition.

“We want a transparent bill that is not used for persecution and victimization of anyone. Both the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) suffered due to the accountability law of Musharraf regime,” he said.

Naek said that all the proceedings and actions regarding withdrawal of the previous bill and introduction of the new one, were according to rules.

Minister for Religious Affairs Syed Khursheed Shah said the government desired to bring a good law for accountability and get it passed unanimously. “We always took opposition into confidence. We do not want to bulldoze the proceedings. We need better suggestions and make it a consensus bill.”

He said although we have majority and can pass the bill but we will still send the bill in the standing committee for the discussion.

Fair trial bill 2012

Federal law Minister on Monday also presented Fair trial bill 2012 in the National Assembly.

According the proposed bill, e-mails, text messages and other electronic correspondence could be presented as evidence.

The proposed draft of the Fair trial bill also defined the domains of intelligence and law enforcement agencies. The agencies can not detain anyone more than a particular time period.


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Comments (33) Closed

Naveed Balouch Oct 08, 2012 08:13pm
Please people. Vote for IK - these criminals with their ill gotten wealth abroad are just trying to protect themselves. They have looted and raped the country for decades, bringing untold misery, strife and heartache to millions of Pakistanis; can you imagine the struggle our poor people have to endure just to survive? It is a fate worse than animals. And this is happening in the land where there were universities, canals, urban planning, self sufficiency and enlightenment thousands of years ago. We were even on the right track 40-50 years ago when PIA was one of the world's best airlines, when we ruled the hockey fields and squash courts, where our neighbors in India would watch our TV plays and shows. They simply cannot be allowed to get away with this rape, murder and pillage. The guilty must be hanged in the city squares.
Monim Oct 08, 2012 07:56pm
When ever they bring bills like the same in the parliament, it shows how much hurried and worried they are to get away from the crimes they have committed in the past.
Qamar Oct 08, 2012 07:43pm
Through this bill, the current parliament and the government (and its allies) want to make sure that financial criminals are protected from accountability and justice.
Saeed Oct 08, 2012 08:01pm
The proposers and supporters of this bill should at least be tried and convicted for aiding criminals and obstructing justice
Qamar Oct 08, 2012 08:35pm
I have posted several comments here, because I am absolutely flabbergasted by the boldness of the architects and proposers of this bill. It is hard to believe that this is happening in the 21st century!!!
Agha Ata (USA) Oct 09, 2012 02:08am
I think Imran khan is the ONLY leader who can help save this country. He is honest, bold, and has political will to fix this country's probems.
kaiser Oct 08, 2012 08:52pm
For years, PPP and PML -N were themselves victims. They are not responsible for the deterioration in the past 40-50 years.
Marghoob Ahmed Siddiqui Oct 08, 2012 08:58pm
This is just to save Zardari from any further action, now and even after he leaves as President. Good and very intelligent.
muhammad Oct 09, 2012 12:22am
wait so if somebody murders someone and goes on hiding in moutains for ten years and when he comes back he wont be charged what kinda messed up law is that ... law is nobody is above the law not even president .
Qamar Oct 08, 2012 07:46pm
I will not have any objection to this bill if the bill also proposes changing the name of the country from Pakistan to 'Crminalistan'.
Kashif (Riyadh) Oct 09, 2012 01:17am
Walayat Malik Oct 09, 2012 12:17am
If you want to delay the decision send it to the committee. If you want to delay it permanently then seek and wait for consensus. Looking for consensus signals lack of conviction and courage!!
Ahsan Khan Oct 09, 2012 12:14am
The National Accountability Commission Bill 2012, a slap on nation.
Ali Ahmed Oct 09, 2012 12:13am
May Allah protect Pakistan from the CRIMINALS and Corrupt people who are making such laws to achieve their nefarious designs.
hero Oct 09, 2012 03:26am
I wonder who even comes up with such a bill!!! I get amazed everyday.........
Salman Ahmed Oct 09, 2012 02:33am
This is another NRO - lets see if the PM:Q and MQM support it or any similar move. If they do, their real face would come out just before the elections.
Ali Ahmed Oct 09, 2012 12:07am
I agree with the true facts and feelings expressed by a loyal and sincere Pakistani
Syed Hassan Oct 08, 2012 10:29pm
I fee like laughing and crying at the same time.
Imran Oct 08, 2012 10:26pm
On paper bill makes sense. The bill should stop putting political rivals on trial but as it stands we all understand it's not being proposed in good faith. It will seem more legitimate if the new law does not apply to current or immediate previous administrations.
MG Oct 09, 2012 03:00am
Despicable. Deplorable. Demeaning.
Owais Oct 08, 2012 11:08pm
Please show doors to existing member of parliaments in next election.
Awara Oct 09, 2012 02:51am
what difference does it make if 10 days or 10 years, its not that any one convicted would stay in jail. We have known criminals sitting as lawmakers and rulers of the country. Please,
Indusonian Oct 08, 2012 10:14pm
Pakistan has already become a failed state whether the laws passed or not. Please vote for PTI if you want Pakistan to stay on the map. I hope that Dawn will post my comment.
Ijaz Mir Oct 08, 2012 10:11pm
PPP and its collion partners have looted Pakistan They can pass any law to save their loot. They have so much money they will buy votes and loot for another four years. Only divine help can save Pakistan from Zerdai and its partners in crime.
sf Oct 08, 2012 11:29pm
I agree with all that you have said but about IK, He comes forth as an opportunist.
Humayun Bhatty Oct 08, 2012 11:24pm
Government's new effort to ensure a sure get away method from their corruption and fraud cases.
Observer Oct 08, 2012 09:26pm
e-mails should not be included as an evidence. It is not difficult to send an email from someone's account. I get several emails per month from my old contacts' accounts that are not sent by them. Another friend was recently blackmailed in a similar way and an email from his account was sent to "all of his contacts" with not so good contents.
Qamar Oct 08, 2012 07:52pm
"Fair trial bill" what a funny name. It should be called "Financial Crimes Amnesty Bill".
Owais Oct 08, 2012 09:26pm
Lawmakers making laws to protect their loot.
Amit-Atlanta-USA Oct 08, 2012 09:37pm
Watch my words, this bill will be passed with near UNANIMOUS support! Everyone has a stake in it!
m razaq Oct 09, 2012 02:11am
law only for self defence not acceptable
Monim Oct 08, 2012 07:53pm
Once more the criminals are trying to protect the criminals using the parliament which is "supreme", People should open their eyes and identify the crooks and vote wisely!
Observer Oct 08, 2012 11:44pm
It is the last nail in the coffin. PPP and Nawaz Leage want a bill that will free them from any cases of corruption or accountability at all. The present accountability law made by General Musharraf is not giving them good sleep at nights and they in fact want themselves to be free of all accountability. Wake up Pakistanis.