Pakistan

NA passes bill restoring Khatm-e-Nabuwwat declaration to Election Act

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ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly on Thursday unanimously passed the amendment with regard to Khatm-e-Nabuwwat (finality of prophet-hood) declaration to the Election Reforms Act 2017.

The amended bill was moved by Law Minister Zahid Hamid.

Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said the declaration contained in the nomination paper has been restored to its original form through amendment in the Act.

On Wednesday, speaker National Assembly Ayaz Sadiq assured restoration of omitted provision from Election Reforms Act 2017 regarding finality of the Prophet-hood (Khatm-e-Nabuwwat).

Addressing a press conference here along with legislators from various political parties, the Speaker said that the omission of the oath provision from the nomination papers of the election commission was a ‘clerical mistake’.

The issue had emerged in the media reports after the opposition’s protest following the passage of Election Reforms Bill 2017 in lower house of the parliament.

The protest prompted the government to give justifications and eventually announcing the amendment in the recently passed bill.

“It’s not a big deal to rectify the error since it’s a clerical mistake,” said Ayaz while standing with parliamentary leaders of various political parties.

He added: “Election Reforms Act 2017 will be tabled in the National Assembly for amendment with regard to finality of Prophet-hood provision.”

Speaking on the occasion, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi said that the issue is sensitive since it has hurt the sentiments of the masses.

“We have also recommended the government to review amendments in clause 203 of the Election Reforms Bill,” he added.

Joining in conversation with media, Law Minister Zahid Hamid said that the oath will be restored in its original form into the law.

Receiving immense criticism soon after the passage of the bill yesterday, Hamid had claimed in the National Assembly that the provision regarding Khatm-e-Nabuwwat has not been changed at all, adding: “Only the oath taking form for the candidate has been made simple.”

The controversial bill was passed by the national assembly yesterday which was being deemed a part of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N)’s endeavours to pave the way for reinstatement of deposed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as president of the party.

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