Punjab Assembly IN SESSION - PA members ordered to respect Jinnah - Pakistan Today

Punjab Assembly IN SESSION – PA members ordered to respect Jinnah

LAHORE – Punjab Assembly (PA) Deputy Speaker Rana Mashhood has barred all the legislators in the house from passing controversial remarks against Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. On a point of order, PML-Q backed MPA Abdullah Yousaf Warraich drew the attention of the house over the remarks of Sheikh Alla-ud-Din against Quaid-e-Azam. He said that Law Minister Rana Sanaullah also remained silent on the issue. Rana Mashhood, who was chairing the assembly’s session on Monday thus passed a ruling that no controversial remarks could be attributed to the father of the nation.
The house witnessed a debate over Alla-ud-Din’s remarks as opposition member Amna Ulfat said that Sheikh had promised to resign along with his 47 members if he could not prove that Jinnah ‘swung’ from Congress to Muslim League. Sheikh maintained, “I will prove what I have said. This is history and no one should take it personal. Jaswant Singh in his recent book on Jinnah also mentioned the same at page number 84-87 and 101.” He said that no one could distort the history. At this the chair interfered and directed Sheikh to stop commenting.
The opposition chanted ‘Lota-Lota’ repeatedly whenever the members of the unification group tried to speak in the house.
The proceeding started one hour and 33 minutes late from its scheduled time and the question hour started at 4:43. But in the meanwhile the PPP MPA Pervez Rafique on a point of order drew the attention of the house over the protest of Christian community against the alleged blasphemy. He informed the house that hundreds of Christian men staged a demo against Lahore Waste Management (LWM) MD Lahore Wasim Ajmal.
He also said that the Christian community demanded relaxation owing to fasting when the MD allegedly passed blasphemous remarks. On this, the chair constituted a five member committee headed by law minister to probe the matter. PPP MPA demanded Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) to take suo mouto notice for judicial review to death sentence of Zulifqar Ali Bhutto saying that his death was a judicial murder. PPP MPA Shaukat Basra demanded the CJP to take notice of deteriorating law and order situation in Karachi and of those who attacked the Supreme Court.
PPP MPA Hassan Murtaza drew the attention of the house over the expected exploitation of the farmers over the issue of the fixed price for wheat. He was of the view that the government had planned to deprive farmers of their rights by decreasing the official wheat price from Rs 950 to between Rs 700 to 800. The issue of violation of seats designated to treasury members was also discussed and later dismissed and the chair asked the members not to waste question hour’s time. His strict remarks convinced the house to take up the question hour.
Only two questions were taken in the last few minutes of the question hour and the poor preparation of the Parliamentary Secretary Zafar Iqbal Nagra provided the opposition to push the treasury to the wall. The parliamentary secretary had nothing to speak to satisfy the movers and to respond to the supplementary questions of the members.
The supplementary questions of PPP MPA Azma Zahid Bokhari proved the incompetence of the parliamentary secretary for Rural Development and Public Health Engineering who had no information about the questions asked some three years ago by the members of the house.
However, the chair rescued the parliamentary secretary by ending the question hour. PPP MPA Ashraf Sohna drew the attention of the chair over the absence of the ministers saying that ruling party is not taking serious the house proceedings. He also announced for token boycott against this non-serious attitude of the ministers. When the opposition members were leaving the house the PPP MPA Faiza Asghar Malik pointed out the quorum, which was short and the chair asked to ring the bells for five minutes and all the treasury members and ministers rushed to the house to ensure quorum as a heavy official business was lying on the agenda but the efforts went in vain. Owing to quorum problem, the chair adjourned the proceedings until Tuesday.
When the opposition members left the house to protest over the non-seriousness of the ministers there was only one lady legislator Humaira Awais Shahid who remained present in the house. Interestingly she was also sitting at the designated seats for the treasury that gave the impression she perhaps joined the unification group. However, when she was asked about her presence in the house despite the opposition protest she told the media that an important adjournment motion was supposed to be taken and she stayed in the house with the view that if the motion was taken she had to be present as the mover.



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