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July 28, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. NA seeks judicial reforms to counter `double standards`
• The National Assembly unanimously adopted a resolution on July 27, 2022 seeking the formation of a special parliamentary committee to carry out judicial reforms after heads of the ruling coalition parties, including Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, launched a tirade against the judiciary over Tuesday`s decision of a three-judge Supreme Court bench in the Punjab chief minister`s case.
• The resolution was read out by Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar on the opening day of the assembly`s new session and was also supported by the small opposition in the house after Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari in his hard hitting speech held the judiciary responsible for the state of democracy in the country and accused it of validating all the military takeovers in the past.
• The move seems to be an effort to put the judiciary under pressure as the ruling coalition does not have the two-thirds majority in both houses of parliament, which is required to amend the Constitution
2. 10m women added to electoral rolls since 2018
• National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) Chairman Tariq Malik on July 27, 2022 said as many as 10 million women had been added to the electoral rolls since 2018 general election to take the total number of female registered voters to 56.95 million.
• He said more women as compared to the men were consistently being registered as voters as barriers in the way of female voters registration were dismantled and improved access given to them under a policy decision.
• He was speaking as a keynote speaker at the event `Promotion and protection of women`s civil and political rights by individuals, governments and civil society`, organised by Aurat Foundation in Islamabad. Representatives from major political parties, humanrights organisation, Aurat Foundation and different walks of life were also present
3. Current account deficit swells to $17.4bn
• The current account deficit (CAD) swelled to $17.4 billion in FY22, which could be the most painful shock for an economy already in trouble with serious imbalances.
• The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Wednesday reported that the country recorded a CAD of $17.406bn in FY22 compared to a gap of just $2.82bn in FY21.
• The massive CAD speaks a lot about the severe problem of the balance of payments. The PML-N-led coalition government posted a CAD of $4.323bn in the April-June period of 2021-22, which was the second highest quarterly deficit of the fiscal year that ended on June 30.
4. KP govt to set up five medical colleges under public-private partnership
• The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has decided to establish five medical colleges under the public-private partnership programme in the province.
• `The colleges would be established in Buner, Charsadda, Mansehra, Haripur and Karak as part of government`s plan to promote medical education in the province, Health Secretary Amir Sultan Tareen told Dawn.
• According to him, he has already visited three districts and would go to Karak this week on special directives of Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, who wants to him to submit a feasibility report within a month
5. China says US will `bear all consequences` if Pelosi visits Taiwan
• China warned on July 27, 2022 that Washington would `bear the consequences` if US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visits Taiwan, with tensions soaring ahead of an expected phone call between the two countries` leaders.
• Beijing has hit back hard against the United States after reports emerged last week that Pelosi, a Democrat who is second in line to the presidency, could visit the self-ruled island of Taiwan in August.
• The potential visit is likely to dominate a phone call between Chinese President Xi Jinping and US counterpart Joe Biden, which the US leader has said he expects will take place this week