National Assembly started debate on law and order situation in the country with particular reference to the acts of violence taking place during the last few weeks.

The motion for the debate was moved by Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Chaudhry Barjees Tahir.

Initiating the debate, MNA Rashid Godil said it is the responsibility of government to protect the lives of the citizens. He said MQM workers are being killed in Karachi and no one is listening to our complaints. MQM members staged a walkout from the House to protest this attitude.  

PTI leader Shah Mahmood Qureshi condemned the attack on senior journalist Hamid Mir in Karachi saying it was the duty of the Sindh government to expose the culprits involved in this heinous crime. He said some elements are twisting the debate and taking it as an attack on freedom of expression.

He said responsible journalism is the need of the hour. 

Speaking on the motion, Minister for States and Frontier Regions Abdul Qadir Baloch said after the 18th amendment, maintenance of law and order is prime responsibility of provinces and the federal government does not want to interfere. 

However, the federal government is bound to assist the provincial government if it wanted so. He said rangers have been deployed in Karachi on the request of the Sindh government. He stressed the need for collective efforts to eliminate terrorism from the country.

The Minister said, in Balochistan, there is a considerable decrease in street crimes, kidnapping for ransom and highway robberies due to steps taken by the provincial government.

Abdul Qadir Baloch said the attack on senior journalist Hamid Mir is very regretful and condemnable. He said the Prime Minister himself went to Karachi to enquire about his health. He said a judicial commission has been constituted to investigate the incident and the government is determined to expose and brought to justice the culprits involved in the crime.

However, he said, putting blame on a respectable institution before investigation is very wrong. He said we should trust our institutions and wait for the results of the investigations. He said elements having vested interests through propaganda created the impression of differences between the government and the army. He said the Army Chief categorically stated in his speech on Youm-e-Shuhada that army fully supports democracy, law and the constitution.

Taking part in the debate, Muhammad Safdar criticized the policies and performance of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government and said law and order situation is deteriorating there. He alleged that ‘Sifarish’ culture and corruption is increasing in the province.

The House will now meet again today morning (Tuesday) at 10.30.  

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