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November 10, 2020

PML-N protests non-production of Hamza Shahbaz in assembly

National

November 10, 2020

LAHORE: The opposition in the Punjab Assembly on Monday waged a protest against not non-production of detained opposition leader Hamza Shahbaz and arrest of PML-N MPA Khawaja Imran Nazir in a case of clashing with police outside the NAB office months ago.

There was a pandemonium after loud sloganeering, booing and hooting on Monday and the treasury and speaker could not take up official business. PML-N members began protesting as soon as the session began, standing on their benches, chanting slogans against Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, tearing up the agenda copies and throwing the shreds all over. They also held placards inscribed with anti-government slogans.

As Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi refused to allow them time to speak, they staged a sit-in in front of the Speaker’s dais while chanting slogans against the government. They called the government a bunch of flour and sugar thieves and black marketers of life-saving medicines. PML-N MPAs, including Azma Bukhari, Tariq Masih Gill, Samiullah Khan, were at the forefront.

Speaking on the occasion, Samiullah Khan said that the prime minister had said that he would not give production orders to anyone despite the fact that only the Speaker had the authority to do so. He accused the prime minister of encroaching upon the authority of the Speaker through such a statement.

“The PM has been ignoring to meet PTI allies during his Lahore visits and now he has attacked Ch Pervaiz Elahi with such an offensive statement. Our sympathies are with the Speaker over the issue,” he said. Neither democracy nor this House can be run this way, he said.

The Speaker adjourned the House for 10 minutes to bring the situation under control, but the PML-N MPAs once again started sloganeering after the House met again following the prayer break.

MPA Sardar Awais Leghari said that the government unleashed police torture on poor farmers demanding their right to livelihood instead of providing relief to them. “This House should be told as to who is responsible for the death of farmer leader Ishfaq Langrial and wounding several others,” said Leghari. He demanded judicial commission probe the tragic incident. He said that the government had begun arresting PML-N leaders in an attempt to foil the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) public meeting scheduled in Lahore for Dec 13. “Why MPA Khawaja Imran Nazir was arrested ahead of the PDM gathering in Lahore,” he asked.

Other MPAs also condemned the government for the arrest Khawaja Imran Nazir and lodging a case against PML-N leaders who had staged a sit-in outside the police station where Nazir was taken. The MPAs booked in the FIR included Azma Bukhari, Samiullah Khan, Ghazali Butt, PML-N deputy secretary-general Attaullah Tarar and former minister Saira Afzal Tarar.