LAHORE – Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) member Shumaila Anjum Rana rejoined
the Punjab Assembly as she took oath on Wednesday about three years after her quitting the legislature on the charges of credit card theft and its illegal usage.
PA Speaker Rana Muhammad Iqbal administered oath as vocal opposition legislators greeted Rana with slogans of ‘thieve, thieve’. Ashraf Sohna went to the extent of showing credit card to the PML-N lady legislator.
Speaking at the PA floor after taking oath, Shumaila said her reelection was a matter of pride for the entire House. She insisted that she had rejoined the assembly after getting herself cleared from the charges. “My leadership has nominated me for the second time in honour of the judiciary and the 20th amendment’, she said.
As the opposition interrupted her speech through sloganeering, Shumaila also tried to counter them in same voice but found little support from the treasury.
Shumaila gave up her seat in July 2009 after a lady (Zaira Malik) accused her of stealing and using her credit card. The 20th Amendment allows political parties to forward the names of women and minorities candidates to fill vacant seats in the provincial as well as the National Assembly. According to a provision in Article 224 (6), “If at any time the party list is exhausted, the concerned political party may submit a name for any vacancy which may occur thereafter.”
Ghalib Market police registered a case against Shumaila for allegedly stealing two credit cards from Zaira’s wallet and buying gold ornaments and clothes worth Rs 80,000. The FIR No 551/09 was registered against the MPA under Section 379 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC), on the complaint of Muqeet Salam, brother-in-law of Zaira Malik of Canal Bank. Muqeet alleged in the application that his sister-in-law Zaira Malik was in a fitness club on July 7 and found credit cards missing from her purse. He said Zaira contacted the bank officials concerned who informed that transaction worth Rs 80,000 had been made on her credit cards. He said the banks also informed Zaira that the accused purchased goods from a shop in Siddique Trade Centre. The shop owner showed the recorded CCTV footage and finally Zaira identified Shumaila, who was not a member of the club. At that time, Rana was a member of the Punjab Assembly Standing Committee on Religious Affairs and Auqaf, and more importantly, she was also a member of Chief Minister’s Coordination Committee for the IDPs which deals with the Punjab Chief Minister’s Fund for the IDPs of NWFP.
Prior to Rana’s incident, MNA Haji Pervaiz Khan from Rawalpindi and Minister Prisons Ch Abdul Ghafoor of the N-League indulged in impersonation and acted highhandedly at the Lahore Airport respectively. Interestingly, the MNA lost his seat after a committee found him guilty, and the Minister was given honourable exit from the charges despite the fact that the committee found him guilty on more than two accounts. Prior to Shumaila Rana case, another N-League MPA Munawar Gill was indicted in a rape case. However, he was found innocent in the case.
Unmarried Shumaila Rana is daughter of Hidayat Ali, and she climbed the ladder of becoming an MPA by virtue of her mother Anjum Ara’s services to the party, as the latter has been worker of the party for about two decades.