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Governor Sindh Saeeduzzaman Siddiqi refuses to approve forced conversion bill

11:40 AM | 7 Jan, 2017
Governor Sindh Saeeduzzaman Siddiqi refuses to approve forced conversion bill
ISLAMABAD -  Governor Justice (retd) Saeeduzzaman Siddiqui has refused to ratify the Sindh Assembly’s forced conversion bill following the advice of Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah.

Sources privy to the developments said that besides the chief minister’s advice, the governor Sindh had also received a formal request from the MQM that wanted the bill, oficially known as 'Criminal Law (Protection of Minorities) Bill', to be turned down.

While returning the bill, the governor also considered the resolution of the Council of Islamic Ideology, terming the bill as un-Islamic as well as taking into consideration the protests in  the purview of probable legislation.

Murad, in his advice to the governor, said that the government aimed for certain changes in the language of the bill and thus wants it not to be approved in its current form.

The MQM conveyed to the governor that the bill was passed in a rush without giving the members time for analysis.

In his observations, the governor referred to the letters written by the Council of Islamic Ideology (CII), MQM parliamentary leader Sardar Ahmed, as well as the protest by religious parties, which demanded withdrawal or changes in the bill.

In November last year, the Sindh Assembly had unanimously given the go-ahead to the bill, which sparked furore as it contained some provisions that were considered un-Islamic and unconstitutional by religious groups.

The provision which stirred controversy was that 'no person under the age of 18 could convert to Islam even out of his free will and choice'.

Following protests and threats by the religious parties, the PPP recently announced its decision to review the bill in line with Islamic teachings.

Reportedly, Co-chairman Pakistan People’s Party Asif Ali Zardari assured Ameer Jamaat-e-Islami Sirajul Haq to shoot down the recently passed bill. According to media reports, Siraj also thanked PPP for reconsidering the bill.

The Sindh Criminal Law (Protection of Minorities) Bill, 2016 was tabled by PML-F’s Nand Kumar and Khatu Mal Jeewan.

The bill also recommended at least seven years for perpetrators and five-year jail for facilitators of forced conversions. Moreover, the bill said that adults considering changing their religion be provided with a safe place to live for 3 weeks to ensure that they were making the decision out of free will.

The writer is a civil servant.


Pakistani rupee rate against US Dollar, Euro, Pound, Riyal - Check 14 April forex rates

Pakistani currency remains unchanged against US dollar and other currencies in open market on April 14, 2024.

US Dollar rate in Pakistan

On Sunday, the US dollar was being quoted at 277.5 for buying and 280.5 for selling.

Euro was quoted at 299.95 for buying and 302.9 for selling while British Pound stands at 349.5 for buying, and 353 for selling.

UAE Dirham AED was at 75.45 and Saudi Riyal's new rates was at 73.30. 

Today’s currency exchange rates in Pakistan - 14 April 2024

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 08:00 AM)
Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar USD 277.5 280.5
Euro EUR 299.95 302.9
UK Pound Sterling GBP 349.5 353
U.A.E Dirham AED 75.45
Saudi Riyal SAR 73.3 74.05
Australian Dollar AUD 182.7 184.5
Bahrain Dinar BHD 739.38 747.38
Canadian Dollar CAD 204 206.2
China Yuan CNY 38.45 38.85
Danish Krone DKK 40.45 40.85
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.57 35.92
Indian Rupee INR 3.33 3.44
Japanese Yen JPY 1.86
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 903.91 912.91
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 58.92 59.52
New Zealand Dollar NZD 167.63 169.63
Norwegians Krone NOK 25.38 25.68
Omani Riyal OMR 722.1 730.1
Qatari Riyal QAR 76.35 77.05
Singapore Dollar SGD 206 208
Swedish Korona SEK 25.72 26.02
Swiss Franc CHF 307.11 309.61
Thai Bhat THB 7.61 7.76


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