Senate amends rules to protect secrecy of in-camera meetings

ISLAMABAD: The Senate on Thursday amended rules of procedure to protect the secrecy of in-camera meetings after several complaints arose.

The decision was taken after Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Bajwa recently appeared before Senate and briefed members about national security. However, immediately after his briefing, the news was all over media with some Senators coming on camera to shed light on the discussion held.

Promoting bureaucrats: Senate panel ‘to hammer out new policy’

In the wake of several complaints of the breach of secrecy of proceedings held in-camera by the House and its Committees, the House Business Advisory Committee of the Senate in a special meeting decided to add rule 255A in the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate 2012.

The rule reads, “Where a member of the House or any person specifically participating in any in-camera proceedings, divulges or discloses any information regarding any part of the proceedings or comments or speeches or opinions expressed therein, such matter shall be required to appear before the House Business Advisory Committee, and after being given an adequate opportunity to explain the disclosure attributed to him, may be suspended for a term not exceeding 30 consecutive sittings of the House.”


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