NA Session prorogued indefinitely after rumpus


By Ali Imran

ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly (NA) session was prorogued indefinitely without holding a debate on the expulsion of the French ambassador as the opposition members surrounded the speaker’s dais to register their protest.
The National Assembly held its session to deliberate the matter of the French ambassador’s expulsion. On April 19, the resolution on the issue of the French envoy’s expulsion from Pakistan was tabled in the assembly in line with the agreement between the government and banned Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP).
On Thursday, NA Speaker Asad Qaiser had sought names from parliamentary leaders of all parties having representation in the NA for inclusion in the proposed special committee of the house to take up the resolution on the issue of French envoy.
However, once the session began on Friday, lawmakers from PML-N, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Jamiat Ulema Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) asked that they be allowed to speak on the point of contention.
Moreover, they gathered near the speaker’s podium and raised slogans after being refused time to speak.
According to details, Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri was presiding over the assembly session on Friday. The opposition members wanted to speak on a point of contention. But the deputy speaker did not pay heed
The deputy speaker was asked to let former prime minister Raja Pervez Ashraf and PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal speak during the session, which he did not allow. PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal insisted the deputy speaker allow PPP leader Raja Ashraf to raise his point, but the deputy speaker rejected his plea.
On this, both the PPP and PML-N along with JUI-F boycotted the question-answer session and started raising hue and cry. The opposition members encircled the speaker’s dais and raised slogans of “Labbaik Ya Rasool Allah and Tajdar Khatam Nabuwat (PBUH)”. Some of them were holding up placards as well. The deputy speaker tried to calm down the opposition members but the animated parliamentarians were not ready to listen to him.
Speaking to media outside the National Assembly, Ashraf slammed the deputy speakers’s move to adjourn, stressing that the opposition lawmakers wanted to ask the government about the agreement that was signed with the proscribed TLP and debate on the resolution presented in the assembly.