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January 25, 2021

Parliament may experience turmoil, rowdy scenes today

National

January 25, 2021

ISLAMABAD: The two houses of parliament may experience turmoil and rowdy scenes today (Monday) on account of the recent government actions against the opposition, including demolition of PML-N MNA houses despite the court injunction in Lahore, and the attitude of a federal minister towards the Sindh chief minister in a meeting in Karachi.

The incidents have forged further unity in the ranks of the opposition that has already become an alliance in the shape of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM).

PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz Sharif, who is reaching here today, will chair for the first time the PML-N parliamentary groups joint meeting of the two houses in the Committee Room No 2.

PML-N Quaid Nawaz Sharif has asked Maryam Nawaz to reach the federal capital to attend the closed-door meeting of party parliamentarians in the absence of opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif and Parliamentary Group leader Khawaja Muhammad Asif.

She will deliver a special message for the party lawmakers sent by Nawaz Sharif. Another important meeting of the opposition parliamentary group leaders is also scheduled for today (Monday) separately in the opposition leader's chamber.

It is understood that the proposal mooted by PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari to table the vote of no confidence against the prime minister to throw him out of office, would be discussed in gatherings of the opposition.

Well-placed parliamentary sources told The News that a team headed by Defence Minister Pervez Khattak will approach the opposition stalwarts before the commencement of the sessions of two houses to reach an understanding for smooth running of the houses and seeking its cooperation for transaction of government business in the houses.

The opposition has been declining to attend the house business committee meeting supposed to be chaired by the speaker. The opposition has decided not to have any working relationship on any subject with Speaker Asad Qaisar due to his partisan and objectionable role while conducting the house.

The ministerial team had a meeting with the opposition leaders on Friday but that did not any outcome as the opposition stalwarts refused to trust in the assurances of the government. The sources pointed out that the opposition asked the ministers to put up their assurances in black and white duly signed by the top government figures in future discourse. The sources pointed out that the opposition will agitate the Foreign Funding case pending before the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) against the ruling PTI for seven years and the Broadsheet scam, where the government has appointed a former judge to head the committee for probing.

The PPP will be represented in today's meeting by former prime minister Raja Pervez Ashraf, Senator Sherry Rehman and Syed Naveed Qamar. The sources said that PDM President Maulana Fazlur Rehman has also reached Islamabad and started meetings with the opposition leaders. Maryam Nawaz will have exclusive meeting with him in the evening, the sources added.