Sanjrani’s vote pushes SBP bill over finish line in Senate

Sanjrani’s vote pushes SBP bill over finish line in Senate

The Senate on Friday approved the SBP Amendment Bill 2021 after its chairman, Sadiq Sanjrani, cast his deciding vote in favour of the bill tabled by Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin.

The session of the upper house was adjourned briefly as the government refused to table the bill over potential defeat due to the absence of treasury lawmakers.

The opposition protested the move and urged the Senate chairperson to ask the government to table the bill. “If the government is not willing to move the bill what can I do,” said Sanjrani in response to the opposition’s demand.

Senator Sherry Rehman said by deciding to delay the bill, the government has admitted its defeat. JUI-F Senator Abdul Ghafoor Haideri also said the government should “admit its defeat”.

Read Govt bulldozes mini-budget, SBP bill through NA amid opposition’s protest

However, after the session resumed, the finance minister presented the bill. The bill received 43 votes in favour and 43 votes against it. With Sanjrani voting in favour of the bill, the PTI government managed to clinch victory.

After the bill’s passage, the opposition raised slogans against the government and tore up copies of the bill. They also demanded a recount of the vote, but the Senate chairperson prorogued the session.

During the question-answer session, the Information and Technology Ministry submitted a written response. It said Pakistan’s ranking increased by 14 spots – from 111 to 97 — in the Internet Network Residency Index. The country now ranks 9th among subscribers and 68th in adopting new technologies.

Science and Technology Minister Shibli Faraz also introduced a bill to legislate for the establishment of the National Meteorological Institute of Pakistan which was passed unanimously.