Conspiracies to pit federation against provinces on: Rabbani


Warning that subverting devolutionary process under the 18th Amendment would engender horrible consequence for the country, PPP Senator Raza Rabbani on Monday said bureaucracy and certain political forces were hatching conspiracies to create rifts between the federation and the federating units for their vested interests.
He said this while speaking in the Senate when Senator SM Zafar wanted to introduce a bill in the Upper House on private members day to amend the constitution of the country whereby the subject of curriculum for the educational institutions, devolved to the provinces under the 18th Amendment, could be taken back by the federal government. Senator Zafar said parliament had made a mistake in giving powers to the provinces about making curriculum for the educational institutions and it would give rise to provincialism abolishing uniformity in education. Zafar said he should be allowed to introduce the bill to correct the mistake. Rabbani said the current political polarisation and trust deficit between the provinces and federation would increase as a consequence of amending the constitution and taking the subject of curriculum or syllabi from the provinces. He added that devolution under the18 Amendment was not a step of extreme nature in favour of provincial autonomy, rather it was minimum level of consensus among parliamentarians. The ANP also opposed SM Zafar’s move, saying the bill should not be introduced. Senator Afrasiab Khattack said Bangladesh did not emerge owing to different syllabi and the insurgency in Balochistan was not due to different curriculum, rather it was due to injustice and denial of rights to the provinces. The JUI also opposed the move. Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party Senator Abdul Rahim Mandokhel also opposed the bill and idea that syllabi should be taken back from the provinces.
Senator Professor Khursheed said a consensus should have been evolved prior to bringing any such bill in the Upper House. However, the MQM was in favour of the bill and Senator Haseeb Khan said the bill should be introduced and referred to the concerned committee. Senator Haji Adeel said the government should take notice of some posters and banners of a rally in Islamabad. He said that posters read, “Pak fauj kadam barahao, hum tuharay sath hein” (Move forward Pak Army, we are with you) and “Mulk Bachaney kay leye Kayani ko laana zaroori hey” (Bringing Kayani into power is essential to save the country). Senator Ahmed Ali raised a point of order, saying a bill sent by the committee about State Bank had not been passed yet. Nayyar Bukhari also submitted a privilege motion against Vice Chancellor of Quaid-Azam University Hasoom Yasinzai for passing derogatory remarks against PPP ministers and some lawmakers.