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> Proposed Amendments to the Constitution of Pakistan: A Discussion Paper
Discussion Paper
July 17, 2009

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Islamabad, July 17: PILDAT has issued a discussion paper on Proposed Amendments to the Constitution of Pakistan as an attempt to promote an informed debate and discussion on the question of required constitutional amendments currently under discussion by the Parliamentary Committee set up recently to consider various amendments to the Constitution of Pakistan.


The paper is authored by Mr. Shahid Hamid, Senior Advocate Supreme Court of Pakistan & Former Governor Punjab who is one of the most respected legal and constitutional experts of Pakistan. Mr. Shahid Hamid deserves credit for not only his initiative of penning down an excellent review of the various amendments made in the 1973 Constitution, but also point, for the benefit of various stakeholders and public and media at large, on what course the forthcoming amendments may take.


The discussion paper does not represent the definitive recommendations of PILDAT. PILDAT instead plans to use this paper for discussion and consultation by a wider group of legal and constitutional experts so as to be able to present a collective set of recommendations for the use of the Parliamentary Committee. This paper will set a very sound basis to initiate an informed debate about the constitutional amendments needed in the country.


The paper focuses on the Objectives Resolution, the demand for more Provinces, Provincial Autonomy, Freedom of Association with reference to Political Parties, Local Government, the Powers of the President, General Zia-ul-Haq’s Revival of Constitution Order 14 of 1985 and the 8th Amendment, General Pervez Musharraf’s Legal Framework Order 2002 and the 17th Amendment, the Sharing of Powers between the President and the Prime Minister, the Sixth Schedule which gives constitutional protection to certain laws, the controversial Article 58(2)(b), the Senate and the electoral base for the Senators, Qualifications and Disqualifications for Parliament and the Provincial Assemblies and Constitutional Validations of the various periods of Martial Law or military rule.


The paper is published through the courtesy of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES), Pakistan Office. A copy of the paper can be downloaded here.