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Parliamentary leaders meet today to evolve consensus on delimitation

ISLAMABAD: Speaker of the National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq will chair a meeting of parliamentary leaders parties today to develop a consensus on the question of fresh delimitation of constituencies ahead of upcoming general elections.

A day earlier, a meeting of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) leaders with former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in chair had formed a five-member committee to hold consultations with all political parties to address their concerns over the provisional results of the recently held population census to ensure timely elections, which are to be held in next year.

The opposition parties, especially Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), had decided to oppose the constitutional amendment bill for delimitation of constituencies until their concerns with regard to census figures are not addressed.

Later, the PTI too joined the opposition parties, saying it will not support the bill until the opposition parties’ concerns are not addressed.

A day earlier, speaking to media Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal said it is the collective responsibility of all parties to ensure that elections are held on its schedule.

He had rejected leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah’s suggestion to hold polls on the basis of old census figures if political parties failed to arrive at an agreement over delimitation of constituencies in the light of fresh census figures.

Last week, NA Speaker Ayaz Sadiq had chaired two meetings of parliamentary leaders parties, wherein they had decided to retain the same strength of 272 members in the National Assembly, with a little change in allocation of seats to provinces on the basis of provisional results of the population census.

The Punjab will lose seven general and two reserved seats according to the fresh census figures. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will get five more seats in the National Assembly (four general and one reserved seat), while Balochistan will get three more parliament seats (two general and one reserved seat). Whereas, the federal territory of Islamabad will get one more general seat.

However, the number of seats allocated to Sindh and Fata will remain unchanged.



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