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> PILDAT Launches Youth Parliament Pakistan 2008-2009
July 22, 2008


Islamabad, July 22; After the successful completion of one-year term of the first Youth Parliament Pakistan in December 2007, PILDAT has invited Expressions of Interest from Pakistani Youth for Youth Parliament Pakistan 2008-09.


Youth Parliament Pakistan is a mini Parliament for the Youth of Pakistan to build and enhance their leadership potential for tomorrow and inculcate democratic spirit and an understanding in them about the functioning of democratic institutions in the country.


Young Pakistanis (including overseas Pakistani holders of Pakistani Origin Card) aged between 18 to 29 years as of August 01, 2008 can apply to become Members of the Youth Parliament Pakistan. The only applicable criteria for submitting Expression of Interest (through prescribed forms available at Youth Parliament website ) is for young Pakistanis to be able to read and write Urdu.


Patterned after the National Assembly of Pakistan, the Youth Parliament Pakistan, through an independent Selection Committee, selects 60 young men and women to be its members. The Youth Parliament follows its own two-Party System, an elected Leaders of the House or Youth Prime Minister, Leader of the Opposition, a Youth Cabinet, a Shadow Cabinet and Standing Committees. Some of the selected members of the upcoming Youth Parliament Pakistan 2008 will undertake a Study Tour to the British Parliament and also be part of a Crisis Management Simulation Exercise as part of the Youth Parliament calendar during 2008.


The Youth Parliament Pakistan has a one-year term and will meet for 30 days over 5 sessions during the year at Islamabad, Pakistan. In year 2007, the first-ever Youth Parliament Pakistan worked for one year and was also addressed by the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Chairman Senate, Chief Justice of Pakistan, British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Federal Ministers and a number of other national and international dignitaries and political leaders. The Youth Parliament Pakistan gave its input to the Government of Pakistan on draft Youth Policy as well as prepared and launched Youth Manifesto 2007 to articulate Pakistani Youth’s perspective on key issues ranging from Provincial Autonomy to Local Government System; Free and Fair Elections to Law and Order; Combating Extremism and Terrorism to Economy and Agricultural Development; International Relations to Education and Health, etc. in addition to Environment, Culture, Women, Recreation and Sport, Juvenile Justice and Empowerment of Youth in Rural Areas.


Establishment and facilitation of the Youth Parliament Pakistan is part of PILDAT’s focus on Youth in the country and Youth’s awareness education and training in the norms of politics and democracy in the country. PILDAT strongly feels that sustainable democracy and the sustainability of sound democratic institutions in Pakistan is not possible without youth’s involvement in politics and democracy. PILDAT feels it is important to engage Pakistani youth in healthy discourse and expose them to democratic traditions and culture so as to groom them as civilised, tolerant and peaceful citizens. The concept of Youth Parliament emerged as a way for young people to “learn by doing,” through taking part in Youth Parliament. Practice on the benches of a mock Parliament for the youth can be useful in deciding how to become a more active citizen, either inside or outside the sphere of formal politics.


Youth Parliament Pakistan is to have representation of females along with other segments of the society such as rural population, religious minorities, etc. roughly in the national proportion.

After the 10%% subsidy for membership cost provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, UK, the payable cost of 1 year membership for each selected member is Rs. 100,000. However, those members, who will demonstrate the need for partial or full cost remission will be provided scholarships instituted by the sponsors. No qualified applicant will be denied membership of the Youth Parliament on account of financial reasons. Overseas Pakistanis will not be eligible for subsidised fee and scholarships and will have to pay 1 year membership fee of Rs. 45%,000 or the cost of one session at Rs. 40,000.


Youth Parliament Pakistan 2008 has so far secured sponsorship from organisations such as Jang Group and Geo TV Network, FFC, Mobilink while TCS has supported Youth Parliament Pakistan through making Expression of Interest Forms available at its select Express Centres countrywide.

Detailed guidelines and the Expression of Interest Form can be downloaded from PILDAT website or obtained from PILDAT Office Islamabad and selected TCS Express Centres countrywide.