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Govt will respect SC’s decision regarding Senate elections: Asad Umar

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Federal Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar holding a press conference alongside the Federal Minister of Information and Broadcasting speaking during a press conference on February 9, 2021, in Islamabad. Photo: Screengrab via Geo News.

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar on Tuesday said that the PTI government will accept the Supreme Court's decision regarding Senate elections, adding that the government will take all possible measures to ensure the transparency of the polls.

As reported by Geo.tv, Asad Umar was holding a press briefing in Islamabad along with the Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Shibli Faraz.

Umar said that the PTI government took all decisions within the realm of the Constitution, adding that those [the Opposition] objecting to the idea of holding the Senate polls via an open-ballot system have been "buying and selling votes in the past."

He added that the PTI government came into power with the aim of bringing an end to corruption, including the tradition of horse-trading that has been taking place in Senate polls for a long time.

"For the purpose, the government has tabled a Constitutional amendment in the National Assembly to hold Senate elections through an open-ballot voting system," he said.

The minister added that the government has filed a presidential reference to the Supreme Court regarding holding the Senate elections through an open-ballot voting system, so it will respect the apex court's decision in this regard.

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Cabinet's decisions

Speaking to journalists, Shibli Faraz said that the federal cabinet has approved the extension of the Afghan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement for three months with effect from Thursday, according to Radio Pakistan.

The minister said that the cabinet has also expressed displeasure on the unscheduled load shedding, and has asked the authorities concerned to end the problem on an urgent basis, the publication reported.

The cabinet was informed that the government's Roshan Digital Account initiative has been yielding positive results and around $500 million have been received under this project so far, the minister said.

Talking about steps taken to control inflation in the country, Faraz said that market committees have been abolished, and the district administration has been asked to control the prices of the essential commodities to provide maximum relief to the masses.

The meeting was informed that effective measures have been taken to curb petrol's smuggling, which helped in saving Rs120 billion of taxpayers' money.


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