ISLAMABAD - The Senate Tuesday witnessed two protest walkouts on a single issue of proposed change in original route of Pak-China Economic Corridor before the opposition benches and a lawmaker from treasury side severely protested over it what they said that new route would only be built at the cost of federation.

On the other side, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) demanded declaration of emergency in Sindh to improve law and order situation there. Tahir Hussain Mashhadi of MQM said declaration of emergency was necessary to save the province. "If emergency was not declared in Sindh, it will go out of your hands," he warned.

Giving Example, he said that incidents of kidnapping for ransom, killing of doctors, killings on sectarian basis had increased in Karachi and Sindh "Law and order situation is worse in the Sindh. No one is ready to hear us and there is no writ of the government there ...PM even did not visit to Shikarpur," he said.

On the issue of proposed diversion of original route of Pak-China Economic Corridor, Abdul Rauf of Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PKMAP) from treasury sides protested over the change in proposed route followed by a protest walkout. The opposition benches, including PPP, ANP and PML-Q joined him in the protest walkout.

Haji Adeel of ANP speaking on a call attention notice on the same issue said that the route of proposed Pak-China Economic Corridor was being changed to connect it with Lahore and Multan. He said that this change would severely affect the backward areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Punjab and the original route was also the shortest one. "We will not let change this route, you will have to chose between the two either you want to change the route or keep Pakistan united," he remarked.

He claimed that nationalists of Sindh, Balochistan, KP and the people of FATA stood by them on the issue. Ilyas Balour of the same party warned that the country would no more remain united if corridor was constructed following new route.

Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal rejected the claims of lawmakers and said, "No change had been made in the original alignment of the corridor. "In a meeting with Chinese authorities, we decided that multiple routes would be constructed for the economic corridor that is the back bone of growth of Pakistan, China and Central Asia," he said, adding that there would be 'North South Alignment and East West Alignment' of proposed Pak-China Economic Corridor. He said that Western Alignment was a new alignment for which 11 billion dollars were required. He said that the central point was Gawadar Port that would prove a gateway to development.

However, the opposition benches did not look satisfied over the answer of the minister and an uproar started amid speech of Ahsan Iqbal and later the opposition parties walked out and termed the answer of the minister unsatisfactory. The minister further said that some forces did not want to see construction of the corridor and first such forces created hurdles through the sit-ins when visit of Chinese President to Pakistan was due. "Now when he is again visiting Pakistan and these forces again want to sabotage this project through making it controversial," he said. Soon after the walkout, an ANP lawmaker pointed out quorum and the house was adjourned due to lack of quorum.

Earlier, Deputy Chairman Senate Sabir Ali Baloch referred a privilege motion moved by Senator Ilyas Balour against DG level officer of the Ministry of Commerce to the concerned standing committee. Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir Khan said that explanation had been sought from the officer and he would be brought to book if found guilty. At the same time, Haji Ghulam Ali alleged that Balour had sought personal favour from the officer that was rejected by him.

Leader of the Opposition in Senate Aitzaz Ahsan sought a detailed debate in the House over the recent fuel crisis and the alleged massive rigging in last general elections. He said that government created artificial crisis to benefit oil lobbies.

He further said that the issue of rigging should also be discussed in the house as lawmakers of NA and provincial assemblies would chose senators. "It has direct effect on the upcoming senator elections," he said. Leader of the House Raja Zafarul Haq endorsed the point of view of Aitzaz Ahsan only in connection with fuel crisis.

Senator Nasreen Jalil presented the report of the joint meeting of the Senate committees of finance, water and power and petroleum and natural resources what she said it was the first ever meeting in the history of the Upper House. She said that the trickle down effect of the decrease in petroleum prices had not reached the masses.

Saeed Ghani of PPP pointed out that general elections were due in Gilgit Baltistsan (GB) in March this year and PM had formed 12-member caretaker cabinet that was much bigger than the permanent cabinet. He said some of the cabinet members had strong political affiliations and there were chances of rigging in polls there. He demanded that the present cabinet should be dissolved and impartial short cabinet should be formed.