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MQM says MPs harass female PIA employees

ISLAMABAD: Female employees of the national carrier have been facing harassment at the hands of the same lawmakers of the country who are supposed to protect the rights of the masses, Khushbakhat Shujaat said on Tuesday.

Speaking in the National Assembly (NA), she said parliamentarians were entitled to get free tickets from the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) for their official tours and to attend parliament sessions. Khushbakhat, a Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) lawmaker, said she had received several complaints from women staffers of PIA of harassment by officers and parliamentarians. The minister said the parliamentarians should consider their conduct since they represent thousands of voters who had sent them to parliament to safeguard their rights.

Waseem Akhtar, another MQM member, demanded the word ‘minorities’ should be abolished from the official papers including the constitution since all non-Muslim were equal citizens of the country. Earlier, Akram Maseh Gill of the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid staged a walkout to protest against December 25 not being declared an official holiday. Gill said former prime minister Zafarullah Jamali had promised to declare December 25 a holiday however a summary in this regard was still pending with the Cabinet Division. Minister For Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan said he did not know of such a summary, adding that Gill could meet him to discuss the issue since he held the additional charge of the Cabinet Division.
Source: Daily Times
Date:12/24/2008

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