Senate passes bill to abolish quotas in housing schemes

ISLAMABAD, March 4: The Senate on Monday approved a Bill to abolish discretionary quotas in the public sector housing schemes operating within the limits of federal capital.

The bill titled: ‘Abolition of the Discretionary Quotas in Housing Schemes Act 2012,” was presented in the upper house by the Senator Ishaq Dar, on Monday and was immediately approved without any objection from any quarter.

The bill was passed by the National Assembly in October 16, 2012 and was laid before the upper house after being scrutinised by the Senate Standing Committee. In the National Assembly the bill was piloted by former law minister Zahid Hamid.

It aims to end discretionary quotas in housing schemes in Islamabad for individuals, firms, companies, corporate body etc.

The bill highlights that the discretionary quota in the housing schemes means those plots which are reserved or earmarked for allotment by a designated authority to any selected person or body.

The bill covers even those categories which have any preliminary eligibility criteria for allotments too.

However, the Bill would not cover the allotment of plots in ‘transparent manner’ to widows of persons in the service of Pakistan who become permanently disabled or to legal heirs of such person who die in the line of their duties.

It would become a law soon after the presidential ascent.

Meanwhile, another bill presented in the upper house on Monday by Leader of opposition Senator Ishaq Dar, seeking regulation and strict oversight of foreign funding being received by non-governmental organisations (NGOs) working in the country.

The private member bill titled “The Regulation of Foreign Contribution Act 2013”, seeking authorisation to the federal government to “inspect” accounts of NGOs or individuals receiving foreign donations and to “confiscate” and “cancel” their registration, if found violating the law.

The bill has been referred to the standing committee concerned. —A ReporterSource: