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Govt to inform parliament about involvement of int’l donors in internal affairs: Chairman Senate

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ISLAMABAD, Jan 23 (APP):Senate Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani on Tuesday directed the government to frame a policy to the extent of involvement of international donors into the internal affairs of federation and inform both houses of the parliament for approval within two months.

“The government should frame a policy as to the extent of involvement of (an) international donor/ organization into the internal affairs of the federation especially its policies and legislations and the same shall be placed before the both houses of Parliament for approval within a period of two months,” he said while giving ling on operationalization of joint ownership of mineral, oil and natural gas under Article 172 (3) of 1973 Constitution.

Devolution, which sought interpretation of clause (3) of Article 172 of the Constitution, 1973, and as a result of the debate held in the House, he said he was constrained to interpret the said article for the benefit of the committee and the House.

The Senate chairman said,”Clause (3) of Article 172 of Constitution, 1973, provides for equal ownership of mineral oil & natural gas within the Province or the territorial waters adjacent to a Province (fifty percent belonging to the Federal and fifty percent to the Province) and the Federation is required to exercise its authority in the executive, administrative and regulatory sphere jointly and equally with the Province.

“All decisions, except day to day working, pertaining to or related with these matters shall be taken by the Council of Common Interests (CCI), as this entry falls in Part II of the Federal Legislative List, Constitution, 1973.”

It is to mention that the Functional Committee on Devolution, Senate of Pakistan, made a reference to the Chairman Senate on October 20, 2017 to the affect, if requirements of clause (3) of Article 172, Constitution of Pakistan, 1973, have been complied with. The reference stemmed out from claim of the Federal Government that Article 172 (3) stands implemented in the meetings of the

committee while all four provinces denied this position taken by the Center.

Senators Mukhtar Ahmed Dhamrah Aajiz and Sassui Palijo moved an adjournment motion on November 8, 2017 regarding the recent move of the Federal Government to delink petroleum and gas authority from Provincial oversight which is not only are direct violation of the Constitution but will also create trust deficit between the Centre and the Provinces�.

During the discussion on the adjournment motion it transpired that a Bill has been prepared with the help of World Bank wherein it has been provided that �the Government may, by notification provide that until the Authority is constituted and the officers, employees, consultant etc. are appointed under this Act, the powers and functions of this Authority shall be exercised and performed by the Director General of Petroleum Concessions�, which is the Federal Government.

The Chairman Senate after hearing the members and Minister of State for Petroleum reserved his ruling ad directed the Ministry of Petroleum to provide in writing the nature and extent of involvement of the World Bank in the entire process and any other additional information or material.

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