October 3, 2023

3 PTI MNAs among 7 banned from National Assembly for ‘unparliamentary’ behaviour


Islamabad – Mudasser Chudhary:

National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser on Wednesday barred seven MNAs, including three from the PTI, from entering the House after budget books and expletives were thrown during Tuesday’s session.

In a tweet, the NA speaker said that members who disrupted the session during Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif’s speech have been barred from entering the House as their behaviour was “unparliamentary” and “inappropriate”.

He also shared a picture of the order which said that the conduct of the MNAs during Shehbaz’s budget speech on June 14 and June 15 was “grossly disorderly”.

“They violated the rules and, despite the repeated direction of the chair, interrupted House proceedings,” it said.

Ali Gohar Khan (PML-N), Chaudhary Hamid Hameed (PML-N), Sheikh Rohale Asghar (PML-N), Faheem Khan (PTI), Abdul Majeed Khan (PTI), Ali Nawaz Awan (PTI) and Syed Agha Rafiullah (PPP) have been told to not enter the precinct of the Parliament House till further orders.

A separate statement issued by the NA Secretariat said that the ban on the MNAs would last until further orders. “The NA Secretariat has issued instructions to the concerned MNAs and to the assembly security,” it said.

The decision comes after the National Assembly turned into a battleground on Tuesday as the opposition and treasury members scuffled with each other and threw budget documents and books when the latter continued their noisy protest to disrupt Shehbaz’s budget speech for a second consecutive day.

Qaiser suspended the proceedings of the House three times when the treasury members, led by some of the senior ministers who had come directly to the House after attending the weekly cabinet meeting, refused to pay heed to his directives to stay calm and kept on sloganeering, whistling and desk-thumping. Meanwhile, Shehbaz, who was surrounded by his party members to avoid any physical contact with the treasury MNAs, also continued his speech.

Parliamentary Secretary for Law Maleeka Bokhari was also hit by a flying object and injured in the eye. She later received first aid at the Parliament House dispensary. Besides Bokhari, some MNAs also complained that they had received bruises during the scuffle.

Earlier today, Qaiser met Prime Minister Imran Khan during which the country’s political situation and the ruckus in the National Assembly came under discussion. The NA speaker said that the premier was informed about the incident, adding that those who had violated the sanctity of the House would be punished.

Shehbaz, Bilawal assure NA speaker of ‘peaceful environment’

The NA speaker also telephoned Shehbaz and PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and exchanged views on keeping the environment in the House “pleasant” during the budget sessions, according to a statement by the NA Secretariat.

During the call, Qaiser said that yesterday’s ruckus in the Parliament was “saddening”, stressing that keeping the environment pleasant was the joint responsibility of the government and the opposition.

He asked the parliamentary leaders of all parties to play their role in this regard, the statement added.

Shehbaz and Bilawal agreed with the NA speaker and assured him of cooperation in keeping the parliament’s environment peaceful, according to the statement.

Shehbaz, Bilawal meet at Parliament House

Meanwhile, Bilawal and Shehbaz met at the Parliament House to discuss the strategy for the budget session.

PPP leaders Yousuf Raza Gilani, Raja Pervez Ashraf, Shazia Marri and Naveed Qamar Javed were also present, while from the PML-N, Marriyum Aurangzeb, Ayaz Sadiq and Rana Sanaullah were in attendance.

Speaking to the media after the meeting, Shehbaz said that everyone could see the way that government ministers had behaved during yesterday’s National Assembly session. He thanked Bilawal for showing solidarity and for visiting. He said that the opposition will decide a future strategy together.

Meanwhile, Bilawal said that he had come to show solidarity with the Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly. “The prime minister is issuing instructions to his ministers like one does with children, We are serious politicians,” he said.

He said that the premier was not taking an interest in running the country.

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