A joint sitting of parliament on Wednesday approved Bills to meet the FATF’s requirements to remove the country from the Financial Action Task Force’s grey list.
The bills introduced by Babar Awan, Advisor to the Prime Minister on Parliamentary Affairs, include the Capital Islamabad Waqf Property Bill, 2020 and the Anti-Money Laundering Amendment Bill, 2020.
The Capital Islamabad Waqf Property Bill aims to monitor the proper management of waqf properties within the territorial limits of Islamabad.
The purpose of the Anti-Money Laundering Amendment Bill 2020 is to bring the existing anti-money laundering law into the national mainstream in accordance with international standards under the Financial Action Task Force.
The move demonstrates the government’s commitment to strengthening anti-money laundering laws.
According to the bill, mosques and Imambargahs in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) must be registered before dedicating land, while madrassas and other welfare projects must be registered before dedicating land.
Text of the Bill further stated that the government will have the power to find out and audit money trails of buildings built on waqf properties. All mosques, Imambargahs, madrassas, etc. built on waqf lands will come under the control of the federation. If found involved, the government will be able to take over.
Violators of the law will be fined Rs 25 million and punished for up to five years. The government, through the chief commissioner, will appoint a chief administrator for waqf properties, Bill stated.
The administrator will be able to prevent any issue that harms national sovereignty and unity.