Govt to reach out to Opp for fresh electoral reforms, provincial status for GB

Government and opposition should resolve public issues amicably, NA speaker says

ISLAMABAD: Keeping in view the reservations shown by the treasury and the opposition parties over ‘non transparent’ elections of the Senate, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday decided to form a bipartisan committee comprising government and opposition parties to help prepare proposals for constitutional amendments for electoral reforms and also to award provincial status to Gilgit-Baltistan (GB).

Sources in the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) told Pakistan Today that the government has started efforts to pave the way for transparent elections and the premier has decided to reach out to the opposition as the government as well as the opposition have reservations over the Senate elections.

After consultation with the prime minister, Parliamentary Affairs Adviser Babar Awan called on NA Speaker Asad Qaiser and discussed the formation of a parliamentary committee on electoral reforms. During the meeting, it was agreed to form a parliamentary committee to finalise proposals including the holding of Senate elections through an open ballot.

The resolution tabled by the political parties in the GB Assembly was also discussed and would be presented to Prime Minister Imran, sources informed.

Furthermore, the meeting agreed to form a committee on constitutional and electoral reforms. The committee will be chaired by NA Speaker Qaiser and the opposition and the government will be given equal representation in the committee.

The committee will review in detail the constitutional, legal aspects and reservations of the opposition regarding the GB’s interim province and work out a consensus strategy while deciding whether the committee will also review the pending election reform bill.

The committee will consult on the proposed amendment to the constitution related to the Senate elections.

Qaiser said that important legal issues can be reformed through legislation. The government and the opposition should resolve public issues amicably. The lack of reforms in the Senate elections is a spectacle, he added.

Mian Abrar
Mian Abrar
The writer heads Pakistan Today's Islamabad Bureau. He has a special focus on counter-terrorism and inter-state relations in Asia, Asia Pacific and South East Asia regions. He tweets as @mian_abrar and also can be reached at [email protected]


  1. Giving full state status to Gilgit Baltistan is not really an attempt to strengthen the political position of that region, but is a trap to fully occupy Gilgit Baltistan. Gilgit Baltistan has never been a part of Pakistan, rather it is a part of Jammu and Kashmir. Even the constitution of these Pakistan does not consider Gilgit Baltistan as part of Pakistan. Now the government of Pakistan is falsely pretending to make it a full state for illegal occupation of this area. Along with this, there are atrocities by the Pakistani army there. By the military, the women of Gilgit Baltistan are being raped and the men who protest are being killed. If the government of Pakistan is really concerned about this region then first release Baba Jaan and then give people the right to self-determination.

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