Punjab Assembly passes resolution against governor, opposition walks out

The Punjab Assembly on Friday passed a resolution against Punjab Governor Baligh-ur-Rehman for denotifying Parvez Elahi as the provincial chief minister as the opposition members staged a walkout after pandemonium in the House.  

Mian Aslam Iqbal – a PTI leader from Lahore – moved the motion which was passed unanimously by those present for session, which was already planned notwithstanding the governor’s move.

As the two sides came to attend the session, they exchanged slogans and harsh words which ended when the opposition left the House.

The resolution says “imported government” in the centre has “attacked” Punjab and an attempt is also being made to destabilise the province.

“People, who sold their conscience, have initiated an undemocratic invasion of the house and tried to destabilise the government,” it added.

Moreover, the governor exceeded his powers when he issued the notification for the chief minister’s removal and also “disrespected” the Punjab Assembly.

“The president should take notice of this shameful move. The president should also initiate proceedings to remove the governor from his office,” the resolution read.

Take vote of Confidence

PML-N leader Rana Mashhood told media outside the assembly building that they boycotted the session as no resolution could be moved or proceedings held until the court decision on the petition filed by Parvez.

Mashhood said no assembly proceedings could be held until Parvez had taken the vote confidence according the governor’s notification. “There is no other way out, he has to take vote the confidence.”

The PML-N leader said Speaker Sibtain Khan admitted that there was neither any chief minister nor the cabinet in the province, as he told the House that the motion was allowed only because Aslam Iqbal moved being a member.

He told reporters that there were less 170 government members during the session as people had started leaving Imran Khan, the PTI chairman.

Qureshi sees horse-trading

Earlier in the day, PTI Vice-Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi accused the PPP, without naming it, of horse-trading to buy the loyalties of the PTI members in Punjab.

He said the party members were steadfast and won’t budge before the pressure they had been facing, but added that those switching the sides would have to face public wrath.

Talking to media in Lahore, Qureshi said the forces, who establish a mandi [market] at the Sindh House in Islamabad, had arrived in Punjab.

According to Qureshi, the party members are being offered money and pressed to remain absent at the time of vote of confidence in Punjab.

It was a clear reference to the allegations against the PPP that the party forced and bought the PTI’s Members of National Assembly who changed their loyalties at the time of change in government in the Centre through vote of no-confidence.

However, it must be recalled that these members, who now represent the opposition in the House, had not voted in the favour of no-confidence of motion, which resulted in the removal of the then prime  minister Imran Khan from the office.

Under which law, Punjab Governor Baligh-ur-Rehman denotified Chaudhry Parvez Elahi as the chief minister, Qureshi asked.   

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