Senate Committee approves The Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2016 subject to two objections

General Press Release

Islamabad, November 22, 2016 (PPI-OT):Senate Standing Committee on Interior and Narcotics Control in its meeting discussed The criminal law (Amendment) bill, 2016 and approved the amendment bill subject to resolution of some objections by members.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator Rehman Malik here at the Parliament House on Tuesday. The committee approved amendments in section 298 of the Pakistan Penal Code asking for including words “inciting religious, sectarian or ethnic hatred” and increasing the term of maximum punishment from one year to three years. It also approved amendment in section 498B which relates to forced marriages. The amendment asks for increasing the maximum punishment in case of female child or non-Muslim woman from 5 to 10 years.

The committee approved the bill subject to the observation of Senator Col. (R) Tahir Mashhadi that section 182, 2(c), of PPC should have amount of fine specified. He also showed his concern regarding amendment in section 164 of Qanoon-e-Shahadat act 1984 that conviction should not be done just on electronically concluded information.

Amendments in sections 23, 29 and 32 of the Police Act 1861, and section 11W, Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 were also approved. The majority of the Senators approved the bill already passed by the National Assembly. The minister of state for interior was advised that separate amendment as per the observation of Senators may be moved.

The standing committee has received numerous complaints about housing societies in Islamabad where plots have been allotted in access to the available land. The committee sought a report by CDA and interior ministry to look into the matter thoroughly.

The committee also took notice of closure of Pak Turk schools. The minister informed the committee that the schools were not being closed. The chairman committee Senator Rehman Malik asked for a report on the visa information of Turk teachers working here.

He also asked for a report on the on-going madrassah reforms. The ministry was asked about actions taken so far regarding madrassah reforms to bring them in mainstream as it is the need of the hour. He told the committee meeting that as interior minister, he had brought scholars of all sects on table and formulated an agreement. The ministry was also asked by the chairman committee to submit to the committee if there is any proposal for de-radicalization of extremists and bring them into mainstream. Senator Rehman Malik proposed having female representatives in Nacta to achieve de-radicalization of women.

The committee also discussed The Corporal Punishment Bill, 2016 by Senator Saleem Mandviwala. After discussing the ambit of jurisdiction and the criterion for violation, the committee Chairman constituted a sub-committee with Senator Tahir Mashhadi as its convener. The sub-committee, interior ministry, law ministry, and the mover will finalize the draft of the bill.

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H.No.7, Cat-II, G-8/2,