October 3, 2023

Staff Reporter – Islamabad:

As the third parliamentary year draws to a close, the government may face censure and tough time from the opposition benches in the National Assembly during the presidential address which will mark the beginning of the fourth parliamentary year.

In the joint sitting of the two houses of parliament, convened for the constitutionally mandatory presidential address, the opposition leaders are expected to give tough time to the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government, parliamentary sources said.

In order to forge unity at least in the parliament, the opposition leaders are set to meet in this connection prior to the joint session, in which apart from the parties that constitute the multi-party anti-government alliance Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), other parties such as Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Awami National Party (ANP) will also be consulted to back the protest.

Meanwhile, the government, which has previously weathered several opposition attacks in the House, is also reportedly bracing for the protest during the much-awaited session and is deliberating over the matter to effectively counter the pesky opposition.

According to sources, Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser has held consultations with former speaker Fehmida Mirza and Advisor on Parliamentary Affairs Dr Babar Awan in order to formulate a strategy to handle the situation and ward off chaos.

President Dr Arif Alvi will address a joint sitting of parliament on Sept 13, formally marking the beginning of the fourth parliamentary year of the present National Assembly.

The opposition leadership has long been demanding a joint session to discuss the evolving circumstances in neighbouring Afghanistan and has expressed frustration over the delay in convening the constitutionally mandatory joint sitting.

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