The Senate Functional Committee on Devolution has termed placement of Regulatory Authorities under the jurisdiction of line ministries as a sheer violation of Constitution and recommended that the Regulatory Authorities should be autonomous exercising independence. The Committee which was presided over by its Chairman Senator Mir Kabeer Ahmad Muhammad Shahi has regarded the non establishment of a permanent Secretariat of the Council of Common Interest (CCI) as black era and emphasized that the Secretariat should be established as early as possible and the Regulatory Authorities should be placed under domain of CCI.
Members of the Committee gave their point of view on the issue of placement of the Regulatory Bodies under line ministries. Chairman of the Committee remarked that creation of a permanent Secretariat of the CCI would enable the forum to play its Constitutional role effectively and there is dire need to act seriously in this regard. Senator Sassui Palijo observed that the decision is against the spirit of the Constitution and the government should review this process. She said that deliberate attempts were being made to undermine the true spirit of 18th Constitutional Amendment and Parliament was kept in the dark while taking decision on an important issue.
Senator Muhammad Usman Kakar pointed out that federal government is not serious in implementing the devolution process in letter and spirit. He reiterated his resolve to make every effort for true implementation of the devolution plan. He proposed that the subject of devolution should be a part of the CCI agenda on permanent basis to ensure its proper implementation.
Senator Tahir Hussain Mashhadi also protested on the move and said that it is a grave violation of the Constitution. Senator Ayesha Raza Farooq defended the decision of the government and said that the government is sincere in the implementation of the devolution plan.
Senator Ilyas Ahmad Bilour stated that ruling janta is trying to roll back 18th Constitutional Amendment. He said that people have rendered sacrifices and vowed to stop every move aimed rolling back the 18th Amendment.
Senators Taj Haider, Saif Ali Khan, Nisar Muhammad Khan and Kamil Ali Agha also apprised the committee about their point of view on the issue.
Heads of regulatory bodies including NEPRA, OGRA, PTA and PPRA also apprised the committee about their stance on the decision taken by the government.
The Committee meeting was attended by Senators Taj Haider, Saif Ali Khan, Nisar Muhammad Khan, Kamil Ali Agha, Moulana Atta ur Rehman, Col ( R ) Syed Tahir Hussain Mashhadi, Ilyas Ahmed Bilour, Sassui Palijo, Muhammad Usman Khan Kakar, and Ayesha Raza Farooq besides senior officers of the ministries, regulatory authorities and other attached departments.