Another day of pandemonium in Punjab PA
LAHORE, Nov 7: Political point scoring and exchange of hot words among treasury and opposition members created rumpus in Punjab Assembly that overshadowed debate on the Asghar Khan case, which was initiated after unanimously suspending rules on Wednesday.
The session chaired by Speaker Rana Muhammad Iqbal could run for about three hours that had started two and a half hours behind the schedule. The third day of the session also marked hat-trick of winding up of the session after the quorum was pointed out and could not be completed despite two breaks.
Treasury and opposition members continued chanting slogans against each other. Many members also recited verses expressing political connotations during their speeches.
Despite on agenda, the Punjab Assembly could not introduce seven bills.
PPP’s Shaukat Basra opened debate on Asghar Khan case denouncing all those, who received money from intelligence agencies
and disgraced politics. Stating that those politicians also received money from army, he asked how they would have spared the common citizens. “Such politicians should be hanged at Alflah Chowk,” he said.
“The politicians, who had received money from agencies during 1990 elections and have now joined Pakistan People’s Party and Jamaat-i-Islami, are the black spot on the face of politics,” he said.
Basra said Asad Durrani had himself given money to Nawaz Sharif and added that such politicians were the evil faces in politics.
This statement drew strong reaction from treasury and there was a rumpus in the house as treasury and opposition members, including minister Chaudhry Abdul Ghafoor, as well as Basra continued speaking on the mike. The members also chanted slogans against each other.
Referring to PPP’s demand for investigation to pinpoint all those who received money, MMA’s Ali Haider Noor Khan Niazi said Benazir Bhutto had herself written a letter identifying her killers but the PPP government had so far failed to investigate and apprehend them.
While the rumpus continued and PPP members were also raising placards bearing inscriptions against the PML-N, the speaker adjourned the session for half an hour.
As the session resumed, Basra again lambasted the politicians, who received briefcases, and added that they had no legal or moral claim to continue politics. He said Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif and his elder brother Nawaz Sharif’s names were included in the list of beneficiaries. “I demand that the Supreme Court issue the detailed judgment in the Asghar Khan case.”
As Chaudhry Ghafoor interrupted and said his leader had already agreed that the FIA might investigate the issue, the members from both sides again started hurling abusive statements at each other.
PPP’s Ehsanul Haq Naulatia said the judiciary had ragged PPP during the last two decades but it always respected judiciary. He said the Supreme Court had given only two judgments against PML-N – one in attack on Supreme Court and the second case of taking bribe from intelligence agencies.
Admitting that the short verdict did not mention Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif’s names, Naulatia demanded that the CM should step down so that he could not influence investigation by FIA.
Chaudhry Ghafoor retaliated that Nawaz Sharif had said he was ready that the FIA should investigate and bring evidence, if any.
“The PML-N has confidence in FIA but PPP did not because it had preferred to hold Benazir Bhutto’s murder case investigated by foreign investigation agencies,” he observed.
He said President Asif Ali Zardari was also facing a charge of killing his wife.
PPP’s Amer Dogar demanded that the beneficiaries in Asghar Khan case should be declared ineligible to do politics forever. He said the courts should also decide Punjab government’s stay case.
PML-Q’s Samia Amjad said the political institutions should look for better sense. She suggested that all political parties should go for self-accountability.
PML-Q’s Samina Khawar Hayat said Nawaz Sharif had sought apology from the nation for entering into a plea bargain with Pervez Musharraf and `running away’ from the country. “Mr Sharif should once again seek public apology for taking money
from intelligence agencies.”
Later, Ms Hayat pointed out quorum. The speaker asked for ringing of bells for five minutes and then extended time for 15 minutes. The quorum could not be completed despite counting the number of members thrice. Consequently, the speaker adjourned the session till Nov 8 (today) 10am.
Earlier, on a point of order, Saeed Akbar Niwani had raised the issue of sugarcane crushing, sugar mills owners’ tactics to push poor farmers against the wall.
As the speaker asked Agriculture Minister Ahmad Ali Aulakh to respond, he sought time by Thursday (today).