Constitutional committee may not reach consensus it once had


Owing to the political polarisation and worsening law and order in the country, Special Parliamentary Committee for Constitutional Reforms is unlikely to reach the consensus it had at the time of the passage of the 18th Amendment.
In the wake of the Supreme Court’s verdict on the 18th Amendment, the committee is again required to review the article 175-A in the Amendment and another amendment will again have to be passed by the parliament by two-third majority to repeal the said article.
Some members of the committee believe that the recommendations, given by the court to the Parliament, could not be incorporated in the Constitution if the required majority is not attained. Talking to Pakistan Today, Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao said that it would be extremely difficult for the government to have the same consensus or the unanimity with which it had passed the 18th Amendment.
“Now political situation in the country has changed considerably and polarisation graph is much higher than ever and any prediction of what the Parliament can do in this scenario is difficult”, Sherpao added. When asked about time leniency the court had allowed to the Parliament, he said, “The decision, actually, is a form of compromise evident from the fact that the case has been adjourned till January, suggesting simultaneously certain recommendations.
Senator Professor Khurshid Ahmed said that Supreme Court conceded that changes or amendments in the Constitution were the prerogative of the Parliament only.
Senator Zahid Khan of ANP who is also a member of the committee said, “The apex court has admitted that only the Parliament can amend the Constitution. The decision augers well for the future of democracy in the country.”
Hasil Bizenjo said “Constitutions are not amended for the governments, they are amended in national interests and when it comes to the interest of the country, I hope we shall have the same consensus”.