ISLAMABAD  -  Senate Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani on Tuesday said that the parliament was the hallmark of democracy which could rightly be called the flag bearer of a democratic system.  

Rabbani was addressing the inaugural ceremony of the newly constructed Senate museum at the Parliament House. 

The Senate chairman gave a detailed account of the underlying philosophy for establishing the monument of unsung heroes, Gali-e-Dastoor, and the newly constructed Senate museum. He said that people were subjected to tortures, imprisonments and were hanged for not bowing to the dictates of commandments of dictatorial regimes and preferred to sacrifice their lives for upholding the cause of democracy and supremacy of the Constitution and the parliament.  

The monument, he said, was to recognize the sacrifices of civil society, workers, labourers, journalists and the common man who believed in democracy.  Rabbani said that House Business Advisory Committee (HBAC) put its weight behind during all the initiatives taken for enhancing the majesty of the Senate as a House of the Parliament.   He said that collective leadership was the essence of any democratic system and decisions were taken in a collective manner were acceptable for all shades of opinion.  Contrary to this, dictatorship remains a one-man show, Rabbani said.   

Regarding Gali-e-Dastoor, the Senate chairman observed that the new generation must know that the Constitution and democracy were not acquired so easily and there existed a long journey of hardships and political struggle.  The democracy, Rabbani said, was not given by any dictator but it was due to the struggle of the common man including political workers, labour class that the nation was enjoying the fruit of democracy.   

“There is a need to preserve this fruit of democracy through continuous struggle,” Rabbani said.   

 He said that the museum would contribute to institution-building and strengthen the foundations of democracy in the country.  “Institutions cannot exist without its history and it is, therefore, highly important to preserve the historical aspects of the evolution of the Senate as House of the Federation,” he said.   

 The Senate chairman said that Pakistan was a democratic country and like any other country possessed a long history of struggles to achieve and retain democracy in the country.  He said that all the initiatives had been taken to remember the people who rendered sacrifices for democracy and supremacy of the parliament. 

The museum preserves and projects the soul and spirit of the Senate of Pakistan.  It compiles and narrates the evolution, historical background and re-organization of the Senate through a combination of pictorial and physical display of various artifacts, murals, dioramas, exhibits and historical documents.   

The Chairman Senate appreciated the contribution made by the Lok Virsa, Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services and the Senate Secretariat in turning this dream into reality.  

Deputy Chairman Senate Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, Leader of the House in the Senate Raja Zafar-ul-Haq and Leader of the Opposition in Senate Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan also addressed the gathering.  

Later, the Senate chairman accompanied by Haideri,  Aitzaz Ahsan, Leader of Opposition in National Assembly Khursheed Shah and parliamentary leaders in the Senate formally inaugurated the Senate museum and briefed them about various sections of the Museum depicting the historical evolution of the Senate of Pakistan.