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ISLAMABAD: The Senate reaffirmed Pakistan’s strong solidarity with Kashmiri people in their just struggle for the right to self-determination, as Kashmiris across the globe observed a “black day” on Friday to convey to the world that India had occupied their motherland illegally on October 27, 1947.

The 332nd session of the Senate summoned on the requisition of almost all senators on a single agenda to debate the Israeli atrocities and aggressive actions against the innocent Palestinians, and especially barbaric Israeli air strikes on Al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza, and stance/ efforts made by Pakistan government in this scenario, deferred the agenda for Monday till 2:30 pm.

To show solidarity with the people of Jammu and Kashmir who observed October 27 as “black day”, the House passed a unanimous resolution strongly reaffirming Pakistan’s solidarity with the Kashmiris in their just struggle for the right to self-determination.

The resolution moved by PML-Q Senator Kamil Ali Agha reiterated Pakistan’s moral, diplomatic, and political support to the Kashmiri people.

Through the resolution, the House strongly condemned the Indian brutalities and the killing of thousands of innocent Kashmiris in the Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

“This House urges the international community for the expeditious formation of a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the gross human rights violation in IIOJK,” read the draft of the resolution.

The House also rejected the conduct of fake elections in IIOJK, saying this violates the UNSC resolutions which stipulate that the final disposition of the disputed territory will be made in accordance with the aspiration of Kashmiri people through the conduct of a free and impartial plebiscite under the UN.

The House also passed two more resolutions expressing profound grief and sorrow over the recent passing away of Senator Rana Maqbool and former Senator SM Zafar, paying rich tribute to the deceased for their services for democracy, as well as, legislative businesses.

Earlier, PPP Senator Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani pointed out that as per tradition after the demise of a sitting member, every following session is converted into a reference session.

Upon Gilani’s request, the Chair Sadiq Sanjrani after taking consent of the House deferred the agenda for Monday with a view to present tribute to the deceased senators.

The resolutions moved by Leader of House Ishaq Dar and Kamil Ali Agha paid glowing tributes to the services and contributions of Rana Maqbool and SM Zafar, saying their services for strengthening democracy and legislative business will be remembered for a long time.

Through the resolutions, the House extended condolences to the bereaved families and prayed for the departed souls of the former members.

In his remarks on the occasion, Dar said that Rana Maqbool was a principled, cooperative and capable person, adding that his struggle for strengthening democratic culture in the country will be remembered for long.

He said that SM Zafar was recognised as the top lawyer and a great politician who through his valuable input to the legislative business, and served many segments of the society.

Caretaker Interior Minister Sarfraz Bugti also paid tributes to the services of late Senator Rana Maqbool and senior politician late SM Zafar. He said Rana Maqbool was one of the finest and seasoned lawmakers.

He also recognised the sacrifices being rendered by security personnel in the fight against terrorism. He said the security personnel are sacrificing their today for a better future for Pakistan.

Referring to the situation in Gaza, the caretaker interior minister also strongly condemned the Israeli atrocities against innocent and defenceless Palestinian people.

It was followed by other senators who also paid tributes to the services and contributions of Rana Maqbool and SM Zafar and extended condolences to the bereaved families.

Senator Raza Rabbani, while paying tribute to the late Rana Maqbool, said that he actively participated in the proceedings of the Senate standing committees.

He that SM Zafar always believed in accountability and worked beyond party lines.

Other senators who spoke included Irfan Siddiqui, Ali Zafar, Hidayatullah Khan, Manzoor Ahmed, Mushtaq Ahmed, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, Rukhsana Zuberi, Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, Walid Iqbal, Kamran Murtaza, Prof Sajid Mir, Nuzhat Sadiq, Dilawar Khan, Sana Jamali, Seemee Ezdi, Krishna Kumari Kohli, Danesh Kumar, Syed Waqar Mehdi, Fawzia Arshad, Khalida Sikandar Mandhro, Rana Mehmoodul Hassan, Muhammad Akram, and Dr Musadik Malik.

The House also offered Fateha for the departed souls of Senator Rana Maqbool and SM Zafar, as well as, the Palestinians, martyred in Israeli air strikes.

The House will now initiate discussion on the Israeli atrocities and aggressive actions against the innocent Palestinians, especially barbaric Israeli air strikes on Al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza, and the stance/ efforts made by the Pakistan government in this scenario, when it resumes its sitting on Monday at 2:30 pm.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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