Islamabad, November 06,
Mr. Faisal Karim Kundi, Deputy Speaker, National Assembly of
Pakistan, while addressing the inaugural session of the third
batch of Youth Parliament Pakistan urged young members to play
a lead role in review of national policies. Mr. Kundi, who is
also the patron of Youth Parliament, congratulated previous
two batches for their policy analysis and highlighted that the
Prime Minister of Pakistan Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani had invited
two members of Youth Parliament to the federal cabinet meeting
to give their input in the draft National Education Policy on
September 09, 2009.
Mr. Kundi was addressing the
inaugural session of the third batch of Youth Parliament.
Other speakers at the inaugural ceremony included Senator S.
M. Zafar, Chairman Youth Parliament Steering Committee, Dr.
Donya Aziz, MNA and Advisor to the Blue party of Youth
Parliament and Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, MNA and advisor to
the Green party of Youth Parliament Pakistan.
Mr. Faisal Karim Kundi
congratulated the members of Youth Parliament emphasizing that
the 48 members had been selected out of over 1600 applicants
from across Pakistan following a rigorous selection process.
He said that youth is the future of the country and
congratulated political parties of the country for also
bringing more youth in the National Assembly of Pakistan and
over 90 members were 40 years or under in the National
Assembly. He said Youth Parliament is an ideal training and
grooming platform for political and democratic orientation of
youth of Pakistan and congratulated PILDAT for its successful
initiative now spanning over 3 years.
Senator S. M. Zafar, Chairman
Steering Committee Youth Parliament Pakistan, stressed that
the members must focus on background research and preparation
in order to lead parliamentary debate and policy analysis in
Youth Parliament. He believed that there are many burning
issues that require focus of youth, the most important of
which is Pakistan’s role in war against terrorism. He believed
the issue requires a fresh perspective of youth and through
the youth analysis, the policy on terrorism requires to be
Dr. Donya Aziz, MNA during her
address to the inaugural session pointed out the weaknesses
prevailing in the Pakistani political structure. She urged
that youth’s involvement into politics and democracy is key to
understanding the governance weaknesses in the country.
Mr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, MNA
stressed that youth must understand the mechanics and
implications of politics. He advised youth to involve in
practical rather than the drawing room politics. In an
inspiring speech at the inauguration session, Mr. Dastgir Khan
said that tree of democracy needs sacrifice.
the chief guests and the members at the inaugural session on
behalf of PILDAT, Ms. Aasiya Riaz, Joint Director of PILDAT
highlighted that PILDAT instituted the project of Youth
Parliament to inculcate in youth of Pakistan values and spirit
for democracy, the importance of dialogue, tolerance for
others views, an understanding of the concept of Parliament
and its role in democratic decision-making and oversight.
Introducing the 3rd batch, she explained that Youth Parliament
seats have been divided on the basis of population criteria
used by the National Assembly of Pakistan; however
representation is also given to Azad Jammu & Kashmir and
Gilgit-Baltistan in the Youth Parliament Pakistan. The average
age of current members is about 23 years and the 48 members
have been selected out of 1643 applicants from across
Pakistan. Gender profile of the current batch is 79% Male and
21% Female on Open Merit. There are two mock parties: the Blue
Party (Liberal) and the Green Party (Moderate). Incidentally,
the Blue Party (Liberals) formed a majority for third
consecutive batch bagging 32 seats (76%) as opposed to 16
members (24%) of the Green Party. She specifically mentioned
and thanked the supporters of the Youth Parliament project
that included UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Swiss
Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Public Affairs
section of the US Embassy, Islamabad and TCS, Pakistan.