ISLAMABAD: Shehryar Afridi has been elected chairman of the parliamentary committee on Kashmir affairs in a controversial process following a walkout by members of the country's three main opposition parties.
It was the first time in the country's parliamentary history that there was no consensus on the election of the head of the committee.
The opposition was of the view that the chairman of the committee should be an experienced person with extensive knowledge of the Kashmir issue.
Members of the opposition wanted the committee meeting to be adjourned for a few days to reach a consensus but later requested that the meeting be adjourned for at least a day.
In this regard, Amir Dogar of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) said that the leadership of PML-N and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) was taken into confidence.
He dismissed the claims of the parliamentary leaders of both the opposition parties as lies.
It may be recalled that members of PML-N, PPP, and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) walked out when their request for adjournment was rejected.
It may be recalled that the seat of the head of the Kashmir Committee was vacant when Fakhr Imam was appointed as the Federal Minister.
After the walkout, PPP parliamentary leader in the Senate Sherry Rehman condemned the government for breaking the parliamentary tradition of consensus in electing the chairman of the Kashmir Committee.
In the Senate, PML-N parliamentary leader Mushahidullah Khan said that Shehryar Afridi lacked the experience to become the chairman of the Kashmir Committee, which was headed by a powerful person like Nawabzada Nasrullah in the past.
He said that no objection was raised by the opposition when Fakhr Imam's name was suggested for the post.