NA Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, while exercising his powers under Joint Sitting Rules 1973, has made a change in schedule of joint sitting
In a major development, the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) led government on Tuesday rescheduled a joint session of the parliament to take “important decisions” to enforce the state's authority in the backdrop of the March 18 clashes between the supporters of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the law enforcers and the alleged attack on the Federal Judicial Complex.
Areas around the judicial complex had turned into battel filed when PTI Chairman Imran Khan — who was ousted from the government last spring via vote of no confidence — arrived there to attend a hearing in the Toshakhana case.
As per the details, National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, while exercising his powers under Joint Sitting Rules 1973, has made a change in the schedule of the joint session of parliament. Now, the joint sitting of parliament will be held on Wednesday (tomorrow) instead of the 10th of next month.
The meeting will be held on March 22 at 4pm at the Parliament House in Islamabad.
The development came a day after a six-hour-long meeting of the heads of the component parties of the PDM — a 13-party ruling alliance — was held with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in the chair.
The high-level huddle of the ruling alliance was held after the premier's meeting with Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Senior Vice President Maryam Nawaz in Lahore.
The office of the speaker of parliament, in calling Wednesday's joint session, did not give a reason but the state-run Associated Press of Pakistan (APP) said the ruling coalition had called for parliament to "take important decisions" to ensure the writ of the state was enforced.
The APP, reporting on a meeting attended by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and his cabinet, cited the participants as saying Khan's PTI was not a political party but "rather a gang of militants", and its "enmity against the state" could not be tolerated.
It is pertinent to mention here that the deposed prime minister has been holding mass protest rallies since he was ousted from the office.
Khan's supporters have clashed with police several times over recent days as the government tried to arrest him in connection with multiple FIRs, including terror cases, registered against him.
As per the reports, the clashes between PTI's supporters and the security forces have brought a new round of political instability to the country amid ongoing economic crisis.
Hundreds of PTI supporters have been arrested as the police launched a crackdown against the party's supporters in recent days.